The Briefly for April 6, 2020 – The “We Have Infected the Tigers in the Bronx Zoo” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Dog parks are closed in NYC, NYSC forced to stop charging memberships, a map of essential construction, art for physical distancing, and more

Today – Low: 50˚ High: 62˚
Clear throughout the day.

Mario Salerno, hero. Mario’s the landlord in Williamsburg who waived April’s rent for all his tenants. (Rebeca Ibarra for Gothamist)

The city is closing all dog parks and runs

Baruch Feldheim, who was arrested for price gouging over 100,000 masks, over half a million gloves and 192,000 N95 respirators, is an asshole and his supply is being given to doctors and nurses for their fair market value. (Neil Vigdor for NY Times)

The USNS Comfort is here with its 1,000 hospital beds, and there are 20 patients on it. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

China sent 1,000 ventilators to assist in the state’s efforts to keep us all alive. (Alyse Stanley for Gizmodo)

The state launched a new COVID-19 tracker that gives county by county information, including numbers on testing, infections, and deaths. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

The city leased at least 20 hotels to deal with the coronavirus hospital surge, converting entire floors into hospital wards for a total of 10,000 additional beds. (Mary Frost for Brooklyn Eagle)

11 pieces of art to discover at a safe physical distance. (Noah Sheidlower for Untapped New York)

Wear something over your nose and mouth when you go out in public. This is to save the rest of the city from you, even if you don’t think that you’re sick, you may still be carrying COVID-19. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

It’s an awful benchmark, but here we are. New York’s deaths from COVID-19 outnumber the deaths on 9/11. (Dana Rubenstein for Politico)

A clarification on last week’s “the NYPD won’t show up if you have a minor car crash” story, outlining the scenarios where the NYPD will actually show up. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Amazon’s PR campaign to shift blame to Christopher Smalls, the man who organized the walkout in their Staten Island facility, is failing. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

The Metropolitan Opera is back this week, streaming performances of Puccini, Mozart, Verdi, Wagner, Donizetti, and Gounod every night. (Adam Feldman for Time Out)

State legislators are pushing for the city to provide EMS workers with housing during the COVID-19 crisis, as some have resorted to sleeping in their cars to avoid bringing the virus into their homes. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

Complaints to 311 about noise have dropped significantly, despite everyone being told to stay home as much as possible. Reports are down over 30% from last year. Are we being quieter or are we deciding it’s not worth bothering the police? (Zijia Song for Bedford + Bowery)

RIP Carmine Notaro, the owner of Carmine’s Original Pizza in Greenpoint. (Greenpointers)

Video: Union Square, Greenwich Village, and Washington Square Park in a pandemic. (James and Karla)

Curious if a construction site near your apartment is deemed “essential?” Check out the new map from the Department of Buildings listing Essential Active Construction Sites. (Norman Oder for Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Project)

The bleak reality inside Rikers Island’s coronavirus quarantine unit. (Angelina Chapin for HuffPost)

A 51-year-old woman was beaten on a city bus in the Bronx last week by a group of riders who blamed her for the COVID-19 outbreak. Three 15-year-old girls were arrested for hate crime assault, menacing, and harassment. The NYPD is searching for a fourth teen. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

360° Video: Driving through an empty Times Square. (ActionKid)

The state’s Attorney General’s office ordered New York Sports Club to stop charging for membership while their gyms are forcibly closed. If anyone has ever had a membership with NYSC, you know how impossible it is to get them to stop charging your credit card. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Video: Learn about Manhattan’s original citizens, the Lenape. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

“Only in the last really 48 hours or so do they feel they’ve seen evidence around the world ― particularly a new study coming out of Singapore ― that shows more evidence that this disease can be spread by asymptomatic people.” This wasn’t a quote from the governor of Georgia, this was our own idiot mayor saying something that the rest of us have assumed for weeks. (Ja’han Jones for HuffPost)

The city banned the use of Zoom for remote learning over security and privacy concerns. (Alex Zimmerman for Chalkbeat)

The Department of Education’s grab-and-go free meal service has been expanded to include anyone who wants food, no questions asked. There are 435 pickup spots across the city for pickups between 7:30 am and 11:30 am. (Sophia Cheng for Gothamist)

What kind of idiot do you have to be to gather by the hundreds for a funeral for a man who died of COVID-19? The death itself should stand as a literal reminder to treat this pandemic seriously, yet the NYPD had to break up a crowd of hundreds who gathered for the funeral of a rabbi. (Molly Crane-Newman for Daily News)

The best burgers in NYC still available for delivery. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Thanks to Chris Walker for today’s featured photo.

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 February 10, 2020 – The “NYPD Declares War on Mayor de Blasio” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The brokers’ fees mess, NY sues the federal government over the Truster Traveler Programs ban, AOC’s BEC, touristy restaurants that are good, and more

Today – Low: 44˚ High: 49˚
Light rain throughout the day.

Photos: The Pet Fashion Show. (Gabe Herman, photos by Milo Hess for amNewYork Metro)

New York City is better than any other city. Why? Everyone has their reason that makes New York their city. For Alexandra Ocasio-Cortez, as we discovered on Desus and Metro one of the reasons is the bacon, egg, and cheeses. (Ashley Reese for Jezebel)

It doesn’t matter if it’s Chicago Pizza, California In-N-Out, or New Jersey laughably calling itself the pizza capital of the world, New York doesn’t care if you think your food is better. It’s not. (Serena Dai for Eater)

High Maintenance came back to HBO on Sunday, here is a list of filing locations. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

A man shot two police officers on Sunday in the Bronx in targeted assassination attempts. There is currently no known connection to any protests or politics and the man, Robert Williams, was out on parole since 2017, pre-dating recent reforms. Williams’s son was shot and killed in the street and according to Williams’s grandmother he “never got over it.” He surrender himself to the police. (Elisha Brown and Michael Levenson for NY Times)

In response to the shootings, the Police Benevolent Association’s message to the mayor was straight forward. “The members of the NYPD are declaring war on you!” and “This isn’t over, Game on!” Oh boy. (Sanjana Karanth for HuffPost)

Because nothing is easy, real estate agents are trying to find every last way around the new Department of State guidance about broker’s fees. Most of the confusion they are creating is who they work for. Does the broker represent you or do they represent the landlord? Check your paperwork. (Jake Offenhartz and Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

The Real Estate Board of New York will, of course, try to stop the guidance with a lawsuit. (Matthew Haag for NY Times)

An overview on what’s happening with broker’s fees. (Localize Labs)

A look and some recent history of the city’s protest murals. (Yoonji Han)

Photos: Scenes from the Golden Gauntlet Graffiti Battle. (Elie Z. Perler for Bowery Boogie)

The City Council is taking a look into ghost kitchens, with the possibility of wanting oversight over them, specifically if they prove to be unfair competition against real restaurants. (Georgia Kromrei for The Real Deal)

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. On Friday morning, a water main broke on Broadway, flooding the immediate area and causing all varieties of chaos. This third break in four weeks was at 110th. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

The mayor’s “fix” for the crumbling NYCHA, the Rental Assistance Demonstration (RAD) program, may be putting the apartments that are a part of the program into an even worse predicament. Apartments under the RAD program are no longer under the oversight of the city and federal monitor. (Greg B. Smith for The City)

RAD is a national program enacted in 2012 that allows public housing agencies to switch the way they get money from the feds — moving from Section 9 (the way NYCHA-owned properties have historically been funded) to Section 8 (a program that funds private landlords). (Rachel Holliday Smith for The City)

Play around with interactive charts showing the most popular and most money-making Broadway shows of the past 20-some odd years. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

amNewYork Metro has “3 ideas for a Knicks rebrand.” All three of them are basically “make it the 90s again.” (Joe Pantorno for amNewYork Metro)

Here’s what the proposed 900-foot tall tower that will be built on top of Macy’s in Herald square will look like. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

You’ve got the rest of the week to “Name A Roach” at the Bronx Zoo. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Does the city need another stadium? Your answer doesn’t seem to matter, the N.Y.C.F.C. are close to moving forward with a plan to put a brand new soccer stadium a few blocks south of Yankee Stadium. There is an affordable housing component to the deal as well that will no doubt please the mayor and help ram this project through the city’s approval process. (David Waldstein for NY Times)

While the coronavirus isn’t a welcome addition to the city originating in China, hot pot restaurants are a different story. (Tony Lin for Eater)

Where to eat in the city’s Chinatowns. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

Wired: Fearing the flu. Tired: Fearing the coronavirus. (Adam Nichols)

New York will sue the Trump administration over the Truster Traveler Programs ban, arguing the government’s decision was arbitrary, violate’s the state’s covering immunity, and was (not a real quote) “a dick move.” (Luis Ferré-Sadurní for NY Times)

The MTA is planning to connect the Livonia Avenue L station and the Junius Street 3 station in Brooklyn by 2024. (Grant Lancaster for amNewYork Metro)

Photos: Chinatown’s Lunar New Year Parade. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

Another story about how some city officials want to push the BQX forward, but this was included for a great photo of a board in a meeting asking for feedback, full of Post-It notes saying things like “NO BQX.” (Alex Williamson for Brooklyn Eagle)

Video: A walk through the Bronx. (ActionKid)

Caroline Baumann, the director of the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum in Manhattan, abruptly quit on Friday with no explanation given as to why. (Robin Pogrebin for NY Times)

The XFL is here (again) and The New York Guardians won their first game. (Joe Pantorno for amNewYork Metro)

13 touristy restaurants that are actually good. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Thanks to @directorchick for today’s featured photo!