The Briefly for March 12, 2020 – The “Why is Mayor Bill de Blasio So Hated?” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Expect six months before we return to pre-COVID19 normalcy, the best of Midtown East, Modell’s says goodbye, Harvey Weinstein is off to rot, and more

Today – Low: 46˚ High: 49˚
Light rain in the evening and overnight.

The census begins today. Last time around, the city’s participation rate was 62%, compared to the national average of 76%. With as much effort the city and state have put into marketing the census, it’s gonna be mighty embarrassing if we maintain that low rate. (Alex Williamson for Brooklyn Eagle)

Why is DeBlasio so hated? (AskNYC)

Rapist and rotting ghoul Harvey Weinstein was sentenced to 23 years in prison. His layer had previously said that he may not outlive any sentence over five years. May he live a long life to experience every single day of that sentence. (Jen Ransom for NY Times)

Even Harvey Weinstein’s own body hates him, as he was hospitalized again with heart problems and chest pain. Let’s all hope he’s got great doctors because he has at least 23 years minus a day to live. (Dean Meminger for amNewYork Metro)

RIP Modell’s, who will be liquidating all of its stores starting Friday. The company is pointing to an unusually warm winter as the final nail in the coffin. If you gotta go to Mo’s, make sure it’s soon. (Crain’s)

The $3.2 million revamp of Woodside’s Little Bush Playground is set to start next month and should take about a year to finish. (Michael Dorgan for Sunnyside Post)

The Chelsea Hotel renovations continue to be an utter mess. Work has stopped because the building did not qualify for a Certificate of No Harassment with multiple tenants complaining about unlivable conditions dating back years. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

Governors Island announced its free programming for the 2020 season, which starts on May 1. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

May we all be lucky to have birthday parties half as wild as 87-year-old Ray from Ray’s Candy Store. (Bob Krasner for amNewYork Metro)

Sometimes you don’t even have to go outside to birdwatch. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

Crown Heights has a new vegan Ethiopian restaurant in Ras Plant Based. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

The number of families in shelters each night was 46 percent higher last year than it was in December 2009, and one out of every 100 babies born in the city was brought to a shelter, rather than a permanent home. Needless to say, Governor Cuomo and Mayor de Blasio did not earn high marks on The Coalition for the Homeless’ annual report. (Janaki Chadha for Politico)

“I can now proudly call myself an NYC housing lottery winner.” One person’s story of how they won the lottery. (Kim Turner for StreetEasy)

Frank’s Cocktail Lounge in Fort Greene has been the backdrop to a changing neighborhood since the 1950s, and on April 10 of this year, that comes to an end. (S.E. Blackwell for East New York News)

Photos: A first look from the observation deck of Edge. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

The lone Yelp review gave it four stars, but still called it “crack head city.” KN Mi Delicia Bakery and Coffee Shop in Mott Haven was part of a drug ring and multi-state 14-person arrest, with a raid finding $50,000 cash and bags stuffed with what is suspected to be heroin and cocaine. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Brooklyn Democratic Party’s leaders have endorsed Councilmember Donovan Richards for Queens borough president. (Alex Williamson for Brookly Eagle)

The city is beginning to experiment with, get this, actual dumpsters for businesses that will be set on the street to remove trash bag mountains that pile up on our sidewalks. It’s almost like the sidewalks should be for people to walk on, not for businesses to store trash on. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

26 excellent Midtown East bars and restaurants to try. (Alexandra Ilyashov for Eater)


Six months. According to the mayor, that’s how long the fight against COVID-19 will take before things return to normal again. Get ready for the worst summer ever. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

The economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic on restaurants will be akin to a major natural disaster. (Serena Dai for Eater)

Restaurants, open-air markets, and catering companies are expected to take a hard hit, Grub Street takes a look at how businesses are preparing to support their hourly staffs if at all. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

“We’re not in a position where we can rely on the CDC or the FDA to manage this testing protocol.” -Governor Cuomo. New York will start contracting 28 private labs to help administer coronavirus testing for New York residents. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Daytime talk shows filming in New York will be forgoing live studio audiences during the COVID-19 outbreak. (Kimberley Richards for HuffPost)

SUNY and CUNY schools will halt in-person classes for the rest of the semester, beginning on March 19. The dorms won’t be closing and classes that are impossible to hold remotely will still be held. (Niedzwiadek and Madina Touré for Politico)

Coronavirus fears may jeopardize the election process, which requires candidates to collect up to thousands of signatures of supporters. This may lead to the governor altering election law, as he did following Superstorm Sandy. (Max Parrott for QNS)

If you’re healthy, you should still consider dining out. The virus is not transmitted via food or drink. (Serena Dai for Eater)

An usher for “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” and “Six” has tested positive for COVID-19. Both theaters underwent a deep clean, the shows are continuing, and the usher is now in quarantine. (Michael Paulson for NY Times)

Manhattan’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is officially canceled. (Todd Maisel and Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

How to help during the coronavirus outbreak. (Azi Paybarahf or NY Times)

A big thank you to reader Taina for today’s featured photo, taken in Red Hook.

The Briefly for March 6, 2020 – The “Silliest Restaurant in New York is Now Closed” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The NYPD is accused of fudgung numbers to sink bail reform, the last on coronavirus / COVID-19 in NYC, the 26th annual Armory Show and Spring.Break, and more

Today – Low: 36˚ High: 50˚
Light rain in the afternoon and evening.
This weekend – Low: 33˚ High: 57˚

Now that tote bags have becomes the necessary accessory in the city, here are 10 reusable bags you need. (Mary Lane for New York Cliche)

If you were to remove all of the non-accessible subway stops from the map, you’d end up with a pathetic looking subway map. (Clarissa Diaz for Gothamist)

If you had “go to that ridiculous restaurant where the staff pretends they’re ninjas,” here is some bad news. Ninja is closed after 15 silly years. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

The hottest Manhattan restaurants for March 2020. (Stefanie Tuder, Serena Dai, Luke Fortney, and Erika Adams for Eater)

A partnership with the Public Art Fund brings permanent art installations to Terminal B as part of its $8 billion transformation. The artists bringing their work to LaGuardia are Jeppe Hein, Sabine Hornig, Laura Owens and Sarah Sze. (Hilarie M. Sheets for NY Times)

Photos: Lots of art shows have the potential to be staid, Spring/Break does not appear to be one of those shows. Also: Inside the 26th annual Armory Show at Pier 94 and Pier 90, the largest art fair happening this week.(Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

Dough Doughnuts will expand to Rockefeller Center this May. (Grant Lancaster for amNewYork Metro)

The MTA is installing over 100 cameras in four subway stations in Forest Hills and Rego Park in an attempt to help the NYPD deter crime in the area. The plan is in reaction to the man who was shot in the leg at the 75th Avenue subway station last March. (Max Parrott for QNS)

We’re living in a bean boom time, and this isn’t referring to the dried beans that are flying from the shelves from grocery stores across the city. Beans, they’re good for your heart, and you have a chance to eat them more in the city. Here are the restaurants where you can experience the bean boom for yourself. (Nikita Richardson for Grub Street)

Will a new soccer stadium in the Bronx, only a few blocks from Yankee Stadium, actually help the neighborhood? The Urban Land Institute New York and Bronx Community Board 4 have released a report outlining how a new stadium could best impact the community. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

Happy 10th anniversary to Paulie Gee’s. (Greenpointers)

Rapist Harvey Weinstein will finally be headed to rot in jail on Rikers Island after a heart procedure. (Jan Ransom for NY Times)

Video: The NYPD violently arrests a Black man suspected of smoking weed in a park in Canarsie, a grim reminder of how the law and its enforcement are often on two very different pages. (Hayley Miller for HuffPost)

Could the Avengers afford to live in their neighborhoods? (Alex Mitchell for amNewYork Metro)

A group of tenants in Stuyvesant Town on Manhattan’s east side are going to court to protect more than 6,000 apartments from possible rent deregulation. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

The scene trying to get in to Brooklyn’s Costco last weekend was insane, don’t think it’ll be any different this weekend (@vote4dongshen)

Not covering your cough during previous epidemics in NYC? Ticketed. Consider yourself lucky you’re only getting mean looks instead. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Are you an asshole? No? Okay, because some asshole sprayed an Asian subway passenger with cleaning fluid. (CBS New York)

COVID-19 has landed in Brooklyn. (Ben Verde for Brooklyn Paper)

In true Albany fashion, Governor Cuomo added an expansion of his executive powers to a bill that allocated $40 million dollars to fighting COVID-19. (Ross Barkan for Gothamist)

Should you cancel a trip because of the coronavirus? Here are three questions to ask yourself before canceling a trip in panic. (Nicole Dieker for Lifehacker)

Your dog can’t give you COVID-19, but you can give COVID-19 to your dog. If you are quarantined, make sure it is without your best friend. The world is a cruel place. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

Over 10,000 have signed a petition calling to close the city’s schools and transition to remote learning while the city deals with the coronavirus outbreak. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

How museums, theaters, and concert halls are dealing with coronavirus. (Julia Jacobs for NY Times)

If you’re sick and worried about coronavirus, are you supposed to visit your doctor or go to the hospital? The city has bungled its messaging about what to do if you think you’ve contracted COVID-19. You shouldn’t just go to your doctor, despite what the city says, because they may not be equipped to deal with an illness on this level and also protect themselves. Call ahead, tell them you think you have coronavirus and follow their instructions. (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

New York City will order some public workers to get tested for coronavirus, and force them into quarantine if they refuse, according to an order issued Thursday by the city health department. (Erin Durkin for Politico)

A coalition of public defenders claims the NYPD is manipulating their own crime data in an effort to push a narrative that recent bail reform is causing a spike in crime on city streets. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The secrets of the historic St. George Theatre on Staten Island. (Nicola Saraniero for Untapped New York)

30 bars where you can meet new people, just don’t get to close if they’re touching their faces too much. (Bryan Kim, Katherine Lewin, Hillary Reinsberg, & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Paula for today’s featured photo.

The Briefly for February 27, 2020 – The “Who is the Most Powerful Person in New York City?” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Staten Island’s rebellion against speed cameras, the F train is headed for construction, the Gowanus Canal cleanup, eating in Mott Haven, and more

Today – Low: 29˚ High: 43˚
Light rain in the morning.

Central Park has a turtle problem. The red-eared slider turtle, technically listed as an invasive species, is having its run of Central Park and muscling out the park’s other species of turtles. How did they get there? They’re usually pets who are abandoned in the park because they’ve grown to an unmanageable size, or their humans weren’t ready for a potentially 50+ year commitment to their new shelled friend. (Sarah Lewin Lebwohl for I Love the Upper West Side)

Video: See life in NYC from 1911 with this colorized and restored 4K footage. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

The 100 most powerful people in New York City. The mayor is #4, which seems high. No, I did not make the list as the person who runs The Briefly, maybe in 2021. (City and State)

Pedro Colon, 61, faces criminal charges after his bus hit Patience Albert, 10, and a 15-year-old boy on the corner of Wortman Avenue and Crescent Street in Brooklyn. The 15-year-old survived, Patience Albert did not. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Get ready for over a year’s worth of construction on the F train to repair damage caused by Hurricane Sandy. The 14+ month job will also add cell service and wifi to the tunnel, so the next time you’re imprisoned by the MTA underneath the East River, you’ll also have to endure someone making a FaceTime call at the same time. Work is slated to start sometime later this year. (Jose Martinez for The City)

It’s not time to freak out, but the coronavirus in the United States is “more of a question of exactly when this will happen” and not if, according to the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. Here is how to prepare for coronavirus in NYC. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

The mayor has been requesting the CDC allow New York City labs to test for coronavirus and that passengers arriving in NYC be screened for it. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

New York, as we know it, will no longer exist tomorrow. […] It’ll be the 1970’s all over again. People will get mean, the streets won’t be safe, graffiti everywhere, and movies will only cost three dollars.” -Tracey Jordan (30 Rock)

Here are NYC’s James Beard Awards semifinalists. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

First Lady Chirlane McCray is considering running for Brooklyn Borough President. People of Brooklyn, I implore you to stop electing anyone in the de Blasio family into any public office in New York City. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

A look back at the Depression-era shanty towns in New York City parks. (Lucie Levine for 6sqft)

The NYPD is investigating police union boss Ed Mullins, the head of the Sergeants Benevolent Association. Mullins, who will never be accused of making the rational move, has taken to Facebook to declare “I WILL NOT BE SILENCED BY THE THREAT OF DISCIPLINE, NOW OR EVER!” This is a man who was quoted as saying “Ferguson Missouri was a lie,” declared war on the mayor, NYPD officers should stand “shoulder-to-shoulder” with ICE and the list goes on. The investigation is to see if his views undermine his capacity as a sergeant, where he earns a salary of $133,524. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

State Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron upheld an August 2019 ruling that four towers planned for the Lower East Side Two Bridges development cannot move forward. The ruling says the land-review process was illegally bypassed and that 2,775 new apartments and 2.5 million square feet of new space does not qualify as “minor modifications.” (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

The MTA announced 1,800 planned job cuts on Wednesday, but hasn’t said where they are coming from or if they are part of the 2,700 job cuts announced in the summer. The agency is hoping to close the projected billion dollar plus deficit projected by 2023. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

Harvey Weinstein may never see the inside of Rikers Island to avoid “another Epstein incident.” (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

A look back on when Mayor Bloomberg wanted poor people to drink less soda. (Arthur Delaney for HuffPost)

Maybe Mayor Bloomberg should never have uttered “we treated our teachers the right way” during this week’s Democratic debate, because NYC’s teachers have the receipts. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Amazon continues to rent buildings across the city, this time it’s a 300,000 square foot space in Middle Village, taking over the Metropolitan Museum of Art’s former space. (Bill Parry for amNewYork Metro)

The Trump administration can withhold millions of dollars in law enforcement grants from so-called sanctuary jurisdictions that refuse to cooperate with immigration authorities, according to a ruling issued on Wednesday from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit in Manhattan, a break from three previous court rulings. NYC received about $4 million a year in law enforcement grants. (Annie Correal for NY Times)

The City Council will consider a package of bills aimed at limiting how much food delivery apps like GrubHub and Seamless can charge restaurants. (Jeffery C. Mays and David Yaffe-Bellany for NY Times)

Staging a Broadway should is tough, staging a Broadway show in Madison Square Garden for 18,000 students is tougher. (Julia Jacobs for NY Times)

Staten Islanders have been wrapping yellow ribbons around utility poles to indicate the presence of speed cameras. The argument of the Facebook group behind the effort is that the speed cameras are nothing more than a money grab from the city. (Amanda Farinacci for NY1)

Most elected officials in Staten Island won’t be participating in the island’s St. Patrick’s Day parade because the parade’s organizers will not allow Staten Island’s largest LGBT to march. Republican State Assemblymembers Nicole Malliotakis and Mike Reilly have announced they will be marching, perhaps making the political decision that Staten Islanders hate the LGBT community more than they hate bigotry in general. (Amanda Farinacci for NY1)

Here’s how the Gowanus Canal clean-up will proceed. (Pardon Me for Asking)

Where to eat in Mott Haven. (Robert Sietsema for Eater)

Thanks to reader Camila for today’s featured photo!