The Briefly for January 24-25, 2020 – The “If You Can’t Beat ‘Em, Switch Parties” Sunday Edition

Today – Low: 26˚ High: 34˚
Clear throughout the day.

There are currently 54 of the city’s zip codes with a Covid-19 test rate over 10%. Remember when Governor Cuomo said he was gonna lock down areas that hit over 4%? (Sharon Otterman for NY Times)

The number of the city’s elementary schools and classrooms that are closed keep rising. (Jessica Gould for Gothamist)

Bill O’ Reilly and Rudy Giuliani have radio shows in NYC? Yup. After failed Republican mayoral candidate John Catsimatidis bought the station in 2019 they pivoted to right wing talk. (Azi Paybarah for NY Times)

New Yorkers United for Change is trying to change the 1.6 NYC million Republicans’ voter registration to Democrat because rather than build viable candidates that appeal to the city’s population, they’ve decided “if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em.” (Clifford Michel for The City)

2021 Election: Who’s running for mayor? (Rachel Holliday Smith for The City)

Franklin Ave’s Crown Heights community space Public Assistants is facing eviction so the landlord to make room for a gourmet supermarket. (Ben Verde for Brooklyn Paper)

In 2019, the Staten Island District Attorney’s Office quietly purchased software from Clearview AI, a controversial facial recognition company. Critics argue Clearview AI violates rights by using photos from social media and image searches without knowledge or consent. (George Joseph for Gothamist)

The new NYPD discipline rules will make chokeholds a fireable offense will apply to all future chokeholds. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Meet the couple walking a marathon every day for a year. Yes, they’re from Bushwick. (Raanan Geberer for Brooklyn Eagle)

Documentary: The story of how artists, organizers, and neighbors all came together to reclaim their streets with Bed-Stuy’s Black Live sMatter street murals. (Mustache)

The 31-story building above the old J&R Music World sold for $140 million. (Rich Bockman for The Real Deal)

Sarah Jessica Parker misses restaurants “so much it hurts.” The more interesting part of this piece about what she ate from January 14 through 18 is Matthew Broderick’s bean obsession. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

Don’t let the real estate lobby convince you that casinos in Manhattan are a good way to raise tax revenue, because the data doesn’t support that. Most of the state’s “gaming revenue” comes from the lottery. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

Be wary of “NY Forever,” a PR campaign dressed up with celebrities, but funded by NY’s real estate trade association, Goldman Sachs, and co-founded by Ivanka Trump’s public relations adviser. (Norman ODer for Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Report)

New York City Restaurant Week is back for winter as NYC Restaurant Week To Go with 571 restaurants, all offering specials for $20.21. (Melissa Kravitz Hoeffner for Greenpointers)

Farewell to the original Big Gay Ice Cream location in the East Village. The company isn’t closing, just the location. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

A look at Bellucci Pizza, a new pizza spot in Astoria with a pedigree that runs through Rubirosa and Lombardi’s. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

Museum of Natural History is displaying the Subway Garnet for the first time in 40 years in the Mignone Halls of Gens and Minerals. If you’re looking to impress your friends, you can tell them that the garnet was found when exhumed during the sewer excavation and it was renamed later. I guess it depend on your friends if they’ll be impressed by that. (Stephanie Simon for NY1)

The Hunts Point Produce Market strike is over with an agreement to a minimum 70-cent-per-hour raise in the first year, eventually rising to a $1.85 bump by the third year. (Claudia Irizarry Aponte for The City)

The Bernie meme has materialized in real life. You can find it in the East Village. (EV Grieve)

2,600 New York City public school students have completely dropped off the radar this school year, according to a Department of Education at a City Council hearing last week. The students are “still being pursued.” (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Video: The history of the Times Square Toys “R” Us. (Defunctland)

In praise of the rise of NYC’s flour tortillas. (Luke Fortney for Eater)

Video: Walking over Washington Bridge, NYC’s most confusing bridge. (ActionKid)

6 NYC rooftops with outdoor heating lamps. (Nikko Duren for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Lindsey for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for January 17-18, 2021 – The “Micheal Scott in Times Square at Sbarro” Sunday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: MLK day in NYC, how to get vaccinated in NYC, meet the 38 mayoral candidates, Cuomo’s infrastructure projects, and more

Today – Low: 35˚ High: 43˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.

What’s open and closed on Martin Luther King Day on Monday, January 18. (Matt Troutman for PAtch)

A list of NYC’s tributes to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

BAM is presenting The 35th Annual Brooklyn Tribute to Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., which is free and virtual on Monday at 11 am. (BAM)

How to get the Coronavirus vaccine in NYC. (Ron Lieber)

Map: How New York state is doing with its vaccine rollout. (Hint: New York City has the lowest percentage of first doses administered. (Jen Chung and Jake Dobkin for Gothamist)

On Thursday afternoon a message was going online around that there would be vaccines administered on a first-come, first-served basis at the Brooklyn Army Terminal. This was called a hoax by some but there was truth to the message. Very quickly, the vaccination site was overwhelmed with people. Vaccination sites have the ability to administer “extra” vaccines at the end of the day if they are going to expire but the city isn’t looking for a Black Friday scenario every day at every vaccination site. I’d expect this policy to change as a result of these lines. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

It seems impossible that there are “extra” doses of the vaccine lying around when tens of thousands of vaccination appointments are being canceled in New York due to the limited supply of the vaccine provided by the federal government. The state’s supply was cut from 300,000 per week to 250,000 per week with 100,000 being allocated to the city. (Joseph Goldstein and Sharon Otterman for NY Times)

There are over 30 people running for mayor in 2021. Here’s a quick rundown of them all. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Of the 38 candidates, Eric Adams and Scott Stringer have received the most cash support. (Jeffrey C. Mays for NY Times)

It is decided that Andrew Yang will be this mayoral cycle’s punching bag. He’s not helping himself when the first question asked of him is “don’t you live in the Hudson Valley?” and the second question is now “don’t you know what a bodega is?” While it’s still early in his campaign, he’s making a few unforced communication errors that are not endearing him to the city as “one of our own.” (Erika Adams for Eater)

Real Estate Lust: This penthouse has so much outdoor space the first photo doesn’t even look real. $12.5 million, 3,500 square feet of outdoor space, and a dining room that can seat 30. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Satire: “My work seeks to interrogate the parameters by which we define and demarcate physical space, exploring the fertile liminal zone between the falsely binary notions of “indoors” and “outdoors” we too often take for granted.” –I Am The Designer Of This Restaurant’s Outdoor Seating Space, And This Is My Artist’s Statement (Simon Henriques for McSweeney’s)

Takeout in Greenpoint for under $10. (Katie White for Greenpointers)

On Tuesday night, the Empire State Building will beat like a heart, bathed in red light, as a part of Joe Biden’s Covid-19 memorial from 5:30 pm to 2 am. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

160 secrets about New York City, enough to impress some of your friends but bore the rest. For instance: Einstein’s eyeballs are stored in a safety deposit box in the city. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

A look at ranked-choice voting ahead of the first election to use it in NYC, the February 2 City Council District 24 election. (Pia Koh for Queens County Politics)

Governor Cuomo is floating the idea of using rapid Covid testing to determine entry into live events. (Anna Ben Yehuda for Time Out)

Four restaurants that recently started selling groceries. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

A running list of restaurants that are temporarily closing this winter. (Luke Fortney for Eater)

Governor Cuomo unveiled a $306 billion infrastructure plan that would replace the Port Authority Bus Terminal with a new state-of-the-art facility, reconstruct Penn Station and add at least eight new tracks along with 14 new buildings with retail space and up to 1,400 affordable apartments, a new waterfront park at Pier 76, and a $1.5 billion expansion of the Jacob K. Javits Center. (Maya Kaufman for Patch)

Atlas Obscura usually highlights mysteries or fascinations. There is no fascinating mystery quite like the Gowanus Canal. (Jessica Leigh Hester for Atlas Obscura)

The Times highlights the life and tireless work of Michael Evans, the project manager of the Moynihan Hall transformation. Evans took his own life seemingly due to the stress of the project only ten months before its completion. (Christina Goldbaum for NY Times)

The City jumps into NY AG Letitia James’s lawsuit against the city and NYPD Chief of Department Terence Monahan’s role as the architect of the aggressive and violent response to the city’s protests over the summer and his history of over-policing peaceful protests, directing cops to make unlawful arrests and allowing the use of excessive force going back 16 years. (Greg B. Smith for The City)

The visuals of the MTA bus that fell off an overpass are amazing, especially considering no one died and only eight were injured. The bus was going 17-26 mph when it should have been going 3-4 mph. (Jen Chung and Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

More photos from the MTA of the bus incident and the media briefing. (Photographer Marc A. Hermann for MTA on Flickr)

For a laugh, the best pizza places in New Jersey. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Filming locations for Martin Scorsese & Fran Lebowitz’s “Pretend It’s a City.” I’m extremely jealous they got to walk in the Queens Museum’s Panorama of the City of New York. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Deanne Criswell, city’s Emergency Management Commissioner, is Joe Biden’s pick for the next head of FEMA. (NY1)

Kyrie Irving, Brooklyn Nets point guard and complete asshole, was fined $50,000 for breaking the NBA’s Covid-19 protocols. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

The argument for Mets owner Steven Cohen to bring Coney Island’s original hot dog, Feltman’s, to Citi Field. (The Coney Island Blog)

The New York City Campaign Finance Board fined current City Councilmember Mathieu Eugene $10,717 for nine violations of campaign finance law, including failure to report transactions and making impermissible post-election expenditures. (Billy Richling for Bklyner)

Here’s wishing Congressmember, Adriano Espaillat, who represents parts of the Bronx and Manhattan, a speedy recovery after testing positive for Covid-19, likely contracting the virus during the attack on the Capitol and sheltering in place with Republicans who refused to wear masks. (Norwood News)

For the spooky set, part four of the GVSHP’s Cemeteries of the East Village. (Sam Moskowitz for GVSHP)

Where to eat when staying warm is a top priority. Restaurants with outdoor heating lamps. (Hannah Albertine and Nikko Duren for The Infatuation)

Today’s featured photo is by Marc A. Hermann, courtesy of the MTA

The Briefly for July 9, 2020 – The “They Don’t Call it a Subway Doomsday for Nothing” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The mayor’s plan for schools in September, the worst place in NYC, wait times for Covid-19 test results slip, frozen boozy drinks, and more

Today – Low: 76˚ High: 85˚
Humid throughout the day.

What’s the worst place in NYC? Seems there’s some consensus around Penn Station. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

Despite what he may think, the president doesn’t actually have control over how the city’s schools operate. Mayor de Blasio’s plan, which is only a plan, is still subject to the state’s approval. Early August is the state’s deadline for approving or modifying the city’s plan. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork Metro)

The city’s schools are facing $642 million in budget cuts. The city’s private schools received tens of millions of dollars from the federal government’s PPP program. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

The mayor announced his plan for school openings in the fall. His plans call for a partial reopening this September. Classroom attendance would be limited to one to three days a week. While it’s a burden for children, teachers, parents, the economy, and everyone involved, it’s a burden that is not worse than death, which is what his plan is hoping to prevent. (Eliza Shapiro for NY Times)

A deeper dive into the options already presented for the city’s schools for in-person learning. (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat)

Here’s a terrifying map of what the city’s subways could look like if the MTA doesn’t get any federal assistance and uses the Riders Alliance 2010 “Doomsday on the MTA” report. To accommodate the loss in revenues, the MTA would have to cut the 1, 2, 3, 7, B, D, F, M, G, J, Z, and Franklin Avenue Shuttle. They don’t call it doomsday for nothing. (Dave Colon for Streetsblog)

Things were already projected to be bad for the MTA, but for each tax dollar the city doesn’t collect, the MTA is pushed further and further into the economic abyss. The MTA’s projected tax revenue for 2021 will be $1.4 billion lower than expected. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

The subways shut down for four hours a day and that may seem inconvenient, but a transit strike in 1966 shut the subways down for two weeks. (Nicholas Loud for Untapped New York)

A Queens driver hit and killed 64-year-old Richard O’Flaherty in Far Rockaway on Tuesday. The driver was not charged. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Governors Island will reopen on July 15th for “passive recreation” from 10 am – 7 pm. You’ll need tickets in advance and they can be reserved beginning on Friday. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Apartment Porn: It used to be a school, now it’s a $22.5 million penthouse with four bedrooms, a two-level terrace, and a double-sided marble fireplace. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Photos: Why the hell is the NYPD protecting statues of Christopher Columbus across the city 24/7? (Gerch Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Someone driving an SUV drove through a crowd of protesters in Times Square, sending at least one to the hospital. The driver was taken into custody, but not arrested or charged. If the NYPD can do it with initial mayoral support and no consequences, what’s to stop a citizen from doing the same thing? (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

New York Attorney General Letitia James is calling for an “entirely new accountability structure” for the NYPD, including reducing Mayor Bill de Blasio’s role in overseeing the force. Under James’ recommendation, a commission of the City Council, Public Advocate, Comptroller, and the mayor would have control over the NYPD’s budget. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

The development announced for the failed Amazon HQ2 site has hit a wall: City Councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer. Without Van Bramer’s support, the project’s needed rezoning can’t happen. Long Island City’s newly constructed apartments are 60% empty. This plan would bring an additional 2,700 apartments to the area. Van Bramer’s idea for the land is simple: it’s public land and should be used by the public. (Christian Murray for Queens Post)

8 tips for negotiating your lease renewal in NYC. (Localize.City)

In an article about how graffiti is on the rise during the Covid-19 pandemic, the Times starts by saying the conditions are perfect for “a new generation of graffiti writers.” The Old Gray Lady indeed. (David Gonzalez for NY Times)

The city’s oldest gay bar, Julius’ Bar, launched a GoFundMe campaign to keep the bar and it employees afloat until indoor dining comes back, which may be a while. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

The availability for Covid-19 testing has increased across the city, but the availability of labs to process those tests hasn’t risen to meet the demand. As a result, wait times for test results have slipped from the three-day range to upwards of a week. Is your result still relevant if it’s been a week since the test? (Elizabeth Kim and Fred Mogul for Gothamist)

Where to pick up food near Central Park. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

The staff at Jack the Horse in Brooklyn Heights are accusing the owners of misusing thousands of dollars in donations intended for employees. The GoFundMe states (errors and all) “We still hoping to raise money to support our wonderful staff who are out of work due to COVID-19.” The owners paid food and alcohol vendors and insurance bills with the $15,000+ of donations to the GoFundMe. (Erika Adams for Eater)

A five-story building partially collapsed in Murray Hill on E 38th in Manhattan on Wednesday afternoon. One person was injured and was brought to the hospital. (Ben Yakas and Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

What’s your favorite pre-pandemic food? (Robert Sietsema for Eater)

A few NYC holy grail apartments: 2 bedrooms for under $2,000 a month. (Erika Riley for StreetEasy)

The story of how an Angela Davis quote ended up being displayed prominently towards the Barclays Center subway entrance. (Norman Oder for BKLYNER)

The Board of Elections in New York City turns Election Day into Groundhog Day—we see the same problematic deficiencies each cycle: despite a bipartisan cross-ideological desire to fix them, they reoccur like clockwork. The time has come to use the important expansion of vote-by-mail to finally fix these consistent problems.
– City Councilmember Carline Rivera, Voting by mail must be expanded to fix existing problems

Interactive Map: More than 13,000 Manhattan-based businesses secured loans of more than $150,000 from the federal government through the Paycheck Protection Program. (Brendan Krisel for Patch)

Major League Soccer announced the schedule for their summer tournament and NYCFC’s first game is today (Thursday) morning at 9 am. (Joe Pantorno for Bronx Times)

RIP Jane Walentas, the artist behind the three-decade restoration of Jane’s Carousel in Brooklyn Bridge Park. (Rose Adams for amNewYork Metro)

Twenty places across the city to enjoy nature. (Jenna Fanelli for Bronx Times)

The city will only retain 50 of its 95 park rangers, thanks to the city’s budget cuts. In a budget of $88.2 billion, the cuts to the park ranger program are saving $10 million, or 0.01% of the budget. (Reuven Blau for The City)

13 places to get frozen boozy drinks in Astoria. (Claire Leaden for We Heart Astoria)

Thanks to reader Lisa for today’s featured photo!