The Briefly for September 13th, 2019 – The Weekend “Are the Subways No Longer A Daily Disaster?” Edition

Gov Cuomo writes a letter to himself, the city lifts its gay conversion therapy ban at the behest of LGBTQ advocates, the pizza festival returns, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

Friday the 13th and a full moon? NYCs gonna be spoooooky tonight.

We’re back to heavy service delays, disruptions, and construction this weekend, so check your trains before you go. (Subway Weekender)

The subway is no longer “a daily disaster,” according to the Times. (NY Times)

The New York Pizza Festival returns to the Bronx next month. (Welcome2TheBronx)

An app from the NYPD to report crimes? This will not go well. (amNY)

The City Council is repealing its ban on gay conversion therapy at the request of LGBTQ advocates. While it doesn’t make sense on the surface, advocates are worried that the right-leaning federal court system will declare the practice unconstitutional. There can’t be a lawsuit if there is no ban. A new state law will continue to ban conversion therapy practices, so don’t worry that new businesses will pop up all over the city offering these “services.” (Patch)

City and state politicians are calling on the DOT to re-open the dedicated bike path on the Triborough Bridge. (amNY)

Two companies that sell at-home (and inadmissible in court) rape kits have received cease and desists from the New York Attorney General Letitia James. (Gothamist)

A man was found tied up in the basement of a Bronx bodega, where he was trapped for three days. The man says he was grabbed off the street, thrown into a car, beaten, and held against his will The owner of the bodega was arrested and the NYPD are looking for an employee. (Patch)

How to eat in Greenpoint for 24 hours. (Eater)

After being a straight-C student for a few years, York College’s cafeteria was shut down by the Health Department after failing an inspection. (Patch)

How plausible were the apartments in Friends? (6sqft)

Governor Cuomo is back to pretending like he’s not in charge of the MTA. This time around, he’s “asking” the MTA’s board in the form of a letter to publicly release the MTA Capital Plan, which lays out changes from 2020 to 2024. (Second Ave Sagas)

The five best octopus dishes around NYC. (Eater)

The dates and lineup for the fall Brooklyn Flea have been released. (Brooklyn Vegan)

The pied-à-terre tax, the tax on the second homes the rich keep in the city, is not dead yet. It was assumed after the “mansion tax” went into effect in July that the pied-à-terre tax was dead. (Curbed)

Eric Adams is digging in his heels in the face of criticism of his rat murder-sludge-bucket contraption. (Gothamist)

Where to find the best mooncakes. (Time Out)

Leslie Jones is leaving SNL, but they are adding Chloe Fineman, Shane Gillis & Bowen Yang to the cast. (Gothamist)

Don’t freak out, but four cases of West Nile were discovered in New York City. It’s actually good news because last year at this time 36 people had been infected. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

Not everyone hates having the Trump name on their buildings. The Trump International Hotel and Tower’s condo board voted to keep the name. Donald Trump Jr is on the condo’s board. (6sqft)

Where to take your hangry tourist friends and family that is both relaxing and still exciting. (Eater)

The Briefly for September 9, 2019 – The “Attacked by a Metal Banjo” Edition

New York’s new license plates have been chosen, a new tomato plant grows on the East River, the Port Authority’s new bus depot comes up short, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest

This week’s late-night subway service change lottery losers are the 3, 4, 6, A, F, N, and Q trains. And always the L train. (Subway Weekender)

This is our new license plate. (Patch)

For the people who loved the tomato plant discovered along the East River, here’s some good news: there is another. (NY Times)

The Charging Bull was attacked with a metal banjo. (NY Times)

It’s a nasty cycle. Bus service degrades to a point where walking will get you where you need to be faster. As a result of the poor service, ridership declines. The MTA doesn’t see the cause, just the effect, and along routes like the B38 and B54, they cut service to match the lowered demand. Now with the degraded service, the buses are still slow, still unreliable and now there are less of them. The MTA can’t fix the problems with the buses because that’s the Department of Transportation’s street designs and the NYPD’s lack of enforcement of what can make traffic flow easily and keep the streets safe for vehicles pedestrians and cyclists. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

The Friends (The worst show to celebrate in the age of Trump) experience pop-up on Mercer Street is all sold out, so some photos of the inside are all you’ll get unless more tickets become available. (Gothamist)

Bill de Blasio’s campaign for president hopefully ends on October 1st and someone should throw a party in celebration, especially if it means the mayor will stop doing things like show up on Tucker Carlson’s show looking for anyone who will support him. (Gothamist)

277 people leave New York for good every day, making it the #1 city people want to leave in the country. (Bloomberg)

Here comes fall, which means here comes food festivals. (6sqft)

The Apple cube is back on 5th Ave, and it’s trippy as hell. (Gothamist)

The Port Authority presented some of its ideas to replace the Port Authority Bus Terminal, and none of them accommodated services like Megabus, which use the sidewalks of midtown for their pickups and dropoffs, into their plans. There was worry that the Port Authority would eventually screw up replacing the bus terminal, and they are already meeting expectations. (Gothamist)

Digging in on bad ideas is now a hallmark of the mayor’s public statements. (Streetsblog)

Here are this week’s restaurants shut down by the Department of Health, including Tasty Popcorn Chicken in Queens with a whopping 121 violation points. (Patch)

New Yorkers already received over 1.25 billion robocalls this year. (Patch)

The 5 Boro Pizza Challenge is an attempt to eat a slice of pizza in every borough in one day, only using public transportation. Think you have what it takes? (6sqft)

Take a look inside Bette Midler’s $50 million penthouse, which is for sale. (Curbed)

New York will soon get more Detroit-style pizza when Michigan chain Jet’s Pizza sets up its first outpost on Ninth Ave between 17th and 18th St. (Eater)

Last Thursday set the record for the most Citi Bike rides in a day with 90,000. (Streetsblog)

The historic boardwalk in Coney Island is landmarked, but still bears scars from Superstorm Sandy. If you walk west on the boardwalk, past the amusement zone, you’ll encounter a section of plywood boards that freeze over in the winter. You’ll see nails sticking up, you’ll see missing boards, plants growing through, and other hazards. Residents are sick of it and are demanding change. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

The governor is flirting with the idea of holding the 2020 New York presidential primaries to February, one day after the Iowa caucuses. (NY Times)

Texting while crossing the street is safe, according to a new study by the Department of Transportation. Remember this the next time some old fuddy-duddy tries to argue otherwise. (NY Times)

Joe Namath is selling his (empty) $1.19 Upper West Side duplex. (I Love the Upper West Side)

There are more hate crimes against black people in NYC this year, but there were more arrests in cases with hate crimes against white people, according to numbers released by the NYPD. (Patch)

A look at five new restaurants in the city. (amNY)

A Times Square Elmo was arrested for groping a teenage girl. (Pix 11)

The history of Central Park’s Shakespeare Garden. (Ephemeral New York)

15 places to try when the company is picking up the tab for lunch. (Grub Street)

Thanks to reader Zlata for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for September 5, 2019 – The “Summer Vacation is Ending for the Mayor” Edition

More L train changes announced, stop dropping your AirPods on the subway tracks, renaming the city for women, a mystery tomato grows, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest

Since firing NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo for his illegal chokehold that lead to the death of Eric Garner, there has been a decline in arrests and summonses all across the city. (amNY)

Summer break is over for the city’s students but concerns about lead paint in classrooms is still going strong. (Gothamist)

The city’s new speed cameras turn on this week from 6 am to 10 pm. Cameras are located within a quarter-mile of the city’s 1,840 public schools and tickets will cost $50. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

No matter what the city eventually decides to do about the gifted and talented programs, New York City Chancellor Richard Carranza has said not to expect any changes this year. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

May de Blasio might drop out of the presidential race if he doesn’t qualify for the fourth debate. We may get a full-time mayor back on October 1. (NY Times)

Maybe de Blasio is better being a part-time mayor if his full-time thoughts would include considering requiring licenses for bike riders. (Streetsblog)

Video: The secrets of Grand Central Terminal. (Viewing NYC)

To celebrate the 25th anniversary of Friends, a terrible TV show, Warner Brothers Television is putting 30 replicas of the orange couch around the country, including multiple NYC locations. (amNY)

Warner Brothers attempted to put a couch in Greenwich Village, theoretical home to the irredeemable idiots on the show, but Community Board 2 said no. (Gothamist)

The city could see remnants of Hurricane Dorian on Friday with heavy rain and wind. (Patch)

Stop dropping your AirPods onto the subway tracks. The MTA is tired of retrieving them. (Gothamist)

How did a tomato end up growing out of a piling near the Brooklyn Bridge? (Gothamist)

Tax policy gave us the summer of spiked seltzer. (Grub Street)

What if the city’s subway stops were all named for women? That’s the idea behind the City of Women map, currently on display at the Transit Museum. Would naming a subway stop after Lena Dunham be worse than naming one after Peter Schermerhorn, who was best known for owning a rope factory? (The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

The elevators in NYCHA buildings are constantly breaking down, which makes sense once you understand the budget to fix them is $74 million, which falls short of the needed $1.5 billion. (Curbed)

Video: Meet the city’s “Mother Pigeon,” performance artist Tina Piña Trachtenburg. (Video NYC)

A walking tour of 1949 Greenwich Village. (Curbed)

The MTA announced how it plans to make L train service worse on nights and weekends as it continues its L Train Slowdown work. These changes are to make accommodation for elevator and escalator construction. (Gothamist)

A look at where we are with the mayor’s $8.7 billion plan to replace Rikers Island with four community jails. (NY Times)

The 15 most anticipated restaurant openings of the fall, according to Eater. (Eater)

Thanks to Chris for today’s featured photo