The Briefly for December 13, 2019 – The “When Calling 311 is Not the Answer” Edition

Today’s daily NYC digest: The weekend’s weekend subway closures, all the info you need to avoid SantaCon, Bloomberg’s toxic legacy with lead, the best Italian restaurants, and more

Today – Low: 48˚ High: 49˚
Rain starting in the afternoon.
This weekend – Low: 33˚ High: 45˚

Lots of disruptions on the subways this weekend on the 1, 3, A, C, F, N, Q, and R trains. Check the scheduled shutdowns before you go. (Subway Weekender)

The Old Farmer’s Almanac, a competitor to the Farmer’s Almanac, has a prediction for NYC weather on Christmas day: “It should be a snowy, picturesque Christmas Day.” (Adam Nichols for Patch)

The mayor has a new plan to address homelessness, which centers around training city workers to call 311. An op-ed, credited to current and former outreach workers, the plan “is a massive misdirection of effort and resources, and has the potential to undermine the city’s ability to house and serve the people it is supposed to be helping”. A worthwhile read breaking down why this doesn’t approach a solution to the problem. (Gothamist)

How to survive SantaCon if you feel you both hate your fellow New Yorkers and absolutely MUST participate. (Alexandra Alex for 6sqft)

Here’s a SantaCon map of places to avoid on Saturday. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Why all the SantaCon hate? Check out some horror stories of SantaCon’s past. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

CUNY started a $1 million pilot program to address food insecurity among the students at BMCC. 50% of students enrolled are food insecure according to self-reports. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork)

Alcoholic candy? Yup. Smith & Sinclair has brought boozy gummies to New York. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Con Ed is planning on raising rates 16% on electricity and between 25% and 34% for gas over the next three years, and the chairman of the City Council’s Committee on Environmental Protection isn’t having it. The Public Service Commission must vote on the price hike before it can be implemented. (Bill Parry for QNS)

Mrs. Claus is paid about half of what a Santa is paid, making the pay closer to an elf than the big red fat man. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

This new development planned for the Williamsburg waterfront is really goin to divide people. Giant, unconventionally shaped buildings? Yes. A promise to build a new public park? Yes. A man-made beach? Yup. (Devin Gannon or 6sqft)

Ecco! has been on Chambers St for over 25 years, but the end of the “Italian saloon” may be nigh, as a new application for a liquor license for another location fo The Grey Dog was filed for the address. (Tribeca Citizen)

Public defenders and justice advocates are calling on new NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea to abolish a policing tool he’s strongly defended: the department’s gang database. (Ese Olumhense and Eileen Grench for The City)

Are we so starved for nature in the city that we’re willing to pay someone for pinecones for $1 to $5 and tree branches for $10? Yes we are. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

More than 1,000 mourners streamed onto a Williamsburg street Wednesday evening to pay their final respects to two of the civilian victims of the Jersey City shooting. The crowd carried the bodies of the dead through the street before they were taken to their final resting places. (Noah Goldberg for Brooklyn Eagle)

Apartment Porn: Take a look at Giorgio Armani’s new $17.5 million penthouse on Central Park West. (Michele Petry for StreetEasy)

A first-year student at Barnard College was killed in an upper Manhattan park early Wednesday evening. Police say the young woman was slain during a mugging. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

Thursday morning was a shit-souffle of a commute, with nine different lines experiencing signal problems, door malfunctions, and activated brakes all before 9am. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Winters seems like a terrible time to surf the East River, but Santa took to the water for half an hour in frigid temperatures. (Claire Lampen for Gothamist)

Six picks for top holiday windows to see this year. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Photos: The 2019 holiday windows. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft, photos by James and Karla Murray)

Some of the city’s best and most affordable museums. (Gabe Herman for amNewYork)

New York City’s best museum gift shops. (Amy Plitt for Curbed)

The Infatuation’s favorite new restaurants of 2019. (The Infatuation)

Undocumented immigrants can get legal drivers licenses in New York starting on Monday, as the state’s Greenlight law is set to take effect. (Zack Fink for NY1)

The 5 best restaurants in Cobble Hill. (Scott Enman for Brooklyn Eagle)

Suit up for a Sunday in the life of Storm Marrero, the first Afro-Latina singing ringmaster for the Big Apple Circus. (Alix Strauss for NY Times)

A look at the recent struggles of Birdcamp, a store and boarding facility for birds. Birdcamp has been an institution for nearly two decades for bird lovers on E 53rd and is in danger of closing. (Alix Strauss for NY Times)

Mayor Bloomberg’s legacy with lead is toxic and steeped in institutional racism. (Alexander C. Kaufman for HuffPost)

The city passed a law banning vendors from the Dyker Heights Christmas lights in an attempt to ease the difficulties the neighborhood was experiencing with the crowds, but the vendors found a loophole and have come back. (Meaghan McGoldrick and Paul Frangipane for Brooklyn Eagle)

NYC’s 31 top Italian restaurants. (Eater)

The Briefly for September 10, 2019 – The “A Horrifying Nightmare Trip on Columbus Ave” Edition

The tribute in lights is killing birds, $90k of stolen cake, a guide to apple picking, more details about the Charging Bull banjo attack, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

San Gennaro kicks off on Thursday, and amNY has a guide for what you need to know and what you need to eat. (amNY)

The May Room, an art installation from Shantell Martin, has taken over Our Lady Star of the Sea, the military chapel on Governors Island, through October 27. This is the first time the chapel is open to the public in twenty years. (Untapped Cities)

While the amusement area in Coney Island is larger than ever, its neighborhood storefronts are struggling with the third highest vacancy rate in Brooklyn and sixth in the city. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

There’s a jimsonweed bush growing on the Columbus Ave greenway at the corner of 93rd St. It’s an odd pick to be planted there, as jimsonweed is highly toxic when consumed. That’s not all. The plant can be made into a powerful drug that is easy to overdose on and if you survive you’re almost guaranteed a horrifying nightmare of a hallucinogenic trip that turns its victims into “zombies devoid of free will.” Avoid the plant. (Gothamist)

Is there nothing New York won’t add alcohol to? Taco Bell, ice cream, and now bubble tea. Bubbleology opens on the 16th in the East Village (Time Out)

A guide to picking apples near the city. (Patch)

This is such a bummer I’m surprised it didn’t come from Neil deGrasse Tyson. The Tribute in Lights, which takes place for a few days every year around the anniversary of 9/11, is killing thousands and thousands of birds. It seems that birds get confused by the light during their migration periods, essentially trapping them and preventing them from having the energy to finish their trip south. Since 2006, the tribute has ruined over a million birds’ flight patterns. (Splinter)

Think about cake. Now think about a lot of cake. Now think about $90,000 of cake. That’s how much cake a deliveryman stole from Lady M in Long Island City. (LIC Post)

City Comptroller Scott Stringer endorsed Elizabeth Warren for president. He joins City Councilmembers Brad Lander and Antonio Reynoso with his endorsement. Do you think it’ll get awkward when de Blasio finally fails out of the race and comes back to do his job in the city? (Patch)

Restoration on the World’s Fair Observation Towers in Flushing Meadows-Corona Park will begin next month. If you’ve ever been curious what’s at the top of the towers, there are some photos. (Untapped Cities)

We’re no Hawaii, but New York state is the 15th “happiest” state in the country. At least we’re not West Virginia, right? (Patch)

Good news for the asphalt area in Tompkins Square Park, which is known as the epicenter of NYC skateboard culture. The city had originally planned to turn over the area while East River Park gets rebuilt to prevent rising sea levels from destroying Manhattan, but the Parks Department has changed its plans after an outcry from the community and a rally promoted by City Councilmember Carlina Rivera. (Gothamist)

Is NYCHA ready for the next Superstorm Sandy? After the 2012 storm, nearly 80,000 residents were without electricity for weeks. Seven years later, Comptroller Scott Stringer is questioning the de Blasio administration’s preparedness. (Curbed)

More details are starting to emerge about this weekend’s banjo-wielding attack by Tevon Varlack from Dallas on the Charging Bull statue. Repairing the statue will cost around $100,000. (Gothamist)

FlyNYON is already under federal scrutiny for its fatal 2018 East River crash which left five people dead. Now it’s attracting even more negative attention for its recent promotion offering dogs a spot in its doors-off helicopter rides around lower Manhattan. (Patch)

Here are the street closures for the 9/11 ceremonies this year. (amNY)

Photos from the Coney Island Beard and Moustache Competition. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

If you’re yearning for the days of Mayor Bloomberg welcoming people into his administration with a handshake, an expectation of hard work, and a quiet “don’t fuck this up,” “The Many Lives of Michael Bloomberg” may be the book for you. (Politico)

The “where are people going out right now” guide. (The Infatuation)

The Briefly for May 21, 2019 – The “Great White Sharks in NYC Waters” Edition

The city gets serious about Long Island City, the era of OMNY has arrived, the MTA cuts bus service and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The bill that would criminalize “texting while walking” is DOA. (Streetsblog)

“I told all my friends they’re never going to see me in the Staten Island Mall again.” (Curbed)

The new logo for privately owned public spaces was unveiled from 600 entries. It’s three chairs. (amNY)

Scared of sharks? A ten-foot long great white shark was spotted a few dozen miles from the city. Just in time for the holiday weekend! (Patch)

Right now students can get a half-priced MetroCards if they live within walking distance of their school. Students often wind up paying the remainder in coins, causing the bus system to grind to a halt. This is why the city wants to get rid of them in favor of free MetroCards, good for three rides a day from 5:30am to 8:30pm for school-related activities. (Patch)

A Brooklyn Community Board approved of a protected bike lane on Flatbush Avenue from Grand Army Plaza to Empire Blvd, mirroring Prospect Park West’s lanes. (Streetsblog)

The history of New York City’s original rooftop bars. (6sqft)

Punk Island added a slew of bands to the lineup of the free punk festival on Randall’s Island, with the addition of a stage whose goal is to raise awareness for mental health and drug addiction in addition to free Narcan training and distribution. (BrooklynVegan)

Photos from Saturday’s 13th Dance Parade in the East Village. (Gothamist)

Say hello to Summer Sucks, an ongoing series from Gothamist. (Gothamist, duh)

Where to get all dressed up and not feel stupid. (The Infatuation)

It seems that only now that Amazon’s HQ2 is a distant memory, city officials are getting serious about developing the Long Island City waterfront and this time around they’re including the neighborhood in the discussions. (The Real Deal)

The state’s Attorney General opened an inquiry into more than a decade of lending practices that left thousands of immigrant taxi drives in debt, while the mayor ordered an investigation into the brokers who arranged the loans. (NY Times)

No one wants to talk to Steve Doocy. (HuffPost)

The Vendy Awards, New York’s awards for street eats, will come to a close after 15 years. (Grub Street)

Attention. If you lost an absolutely gargantuan inflatable pink flamingo in the East River, it has been found. (Gothamist)

Idea: Buses can’t run late if there are no buses! The MTA is curring service on 13 bus lines this summer. (Streetsblog)

How’re the subways treating you? The MTA says they’ve hit a five-year high of being on time. The percentage? A solid C+ at 79.8%. (Sunnyside Post)

Welcome to the era of OMNY. (mtainfo)

Meet some of the 42 heroes who are fostering 90 kittens for the ASPCA. (amNY)

Four Department of Education executives claim that they are victims of “reverse racism.” (The Root)

Here’s a look at what’s open and closed on Memorial Day. (Patch)

A look back at the Coney Island that was, through the archive of the New York Times’ photography. (NY Times)

“I consider it a social experiment, I wanted to see how people would respond to this character.” The character the saran wrapped Shiva. (Bushwick Daily)

There has been an 82% rise in anti-semitic attacks in the city compared to last year. (Bklyner)

In light of the spike, Speaker Corey Johnson is calling on the mayor to fully fund the Office of Prevention of Hate Crimes, which was approved by the city council this winter. The mayor has only funded 70% of the office. (amNY)

A gang member who participated in the killing of 15-year-old Lesandro “Junior” Guzman-Feliz said that a mistake led to the attack. (NY Times)

The MTA reports that the L Train Slowdown is going as planned. Is anyone else tired of hearing about how resilient New Yorkers are? (amNY)

Congratulations to this year’s Obie Award winners. The Obies honor Off Broadway and Off Off Broadway work, and “What the Constitution Means to Me” was named best new American play. (NY Times)

“What is art,” you may ask yourself while looking at photos of slop buckets from a restaurant in Park Slope. (Viewing NYC)

24 ideal outdoor bars in the city. (Eater)

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