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 January 23, 2020 – The “Hipsters Have Left the Neighborhood” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: MSG hasn’t paid propoerty tax in 37 years, Mayor de Blasio’s homeless strategy is failing, the best Brooklyn bars with fireplaces, and more

Today – Low: 33˚ High: 45˚
Mostly cloudy throughout the day.

Madison Square Garden has gone 37 years without paying a single cent of property taxes, not paying the city over half a billion dollars of taxes in that time. James Dolan, awful musician and owner of MSG, is a major contributor to Governor Cuomo which makes it unlikely that the governor would change the deal. (Neil deMause for Gothamist)

Why do I mention he’s an awful musician? Listen to this garbage he wrong about being friends with Harvey Weinstein. (JD & The Straight Shot)

A new exhibit in Chelsea Market looks at life inside the Hotel Chelsea’s apartments, featuring work from Colin Miller’s “Hotel Chelsea: Living in the Last Bohemian Haven.” (Gabe Herman for amNewYork Metro)

Taco Chulo in Williamsburg is closing on March 1, blaming the closing on “the hipsters leaving and going to Bushwick.” (Tanay Warekar for Eater)

Is Fairway closing all of its stores? Depends who you listen to. (Chris Crowley for Grub Hub)

Vegans, despite what you’ve heard, are people too and sometimes they want a good junk food burger. (Ryan Sutton for Eater)

Another look at the subway cars of the future, which will start to be brought unto service later this year. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

About 75% of you answered that you think you’ll never own a home in the city, for those of you who think you might, here are 8 great city starter homes. (Amy Plitt for Curbed)

Mayor de Blasio’s new strategy to help the homeless, giving them the option between going to a homeless shelter and be given a summons or engaging with outreach providers, isn’t working. 60% of homeless New Yorkers chose to get a summons instead of accepting services. Instead of helping the homeless, we’re punishing them. (Mirela Iverac for Gothamist)

A dead homeless man was found on the D train following a report of an unconscious man on the train and instead found a dead man covered in maggots. The police do not suspect foul play. (Anna Quinn for Patch)

RIP John “Butch” Purcell, the “Mayor of Stuy Town.” (Gabe Herman for amNewYork Metro)

Brooklyn’s 8 best bars with fireplaces. (Scott Enman for Brooklyn Eagle)

What should happen to Jeffrey Epstein’s “cursed mansion” on the Upper East Side: The Frick should buy it. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

The Gowanus Souvenir Shop, which has been a real thing for quite a while now, is closing at the end of the month. (Katia Kelly for Pardon Me For Asking)

Electric bike and scooters could become legal in New York on April 1, if Governor Cuomo’s budget passes as expected. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

The governor intends to assemble a task force to assess the conditions of employment in the gig economy and present findings with the intention of voting on legislation by June 1. Cuomo’s previously compared the gig economy to sweatshops. (Anna Gronewold for Politico)

DeliverZero is food delivery with a twist. If you don’t return the packaging the food was delivered to be recycled, you’ll be charged extra. It’s currently available in 8 restaurants. (Nicole Davis for Brooklyn Based)

Here are the finalists in the 2020 City of Dreams Pavilion Design Competition for Lighthouse Park on Roosevelt Island. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

NYC & Company wants you to get out of your apartment for the NYC Winter Outing, which started on Monday, runs for three weeks, and combines NYC Broadway Week, NYC Restaurant Week and NYC Must-See Week. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

The Bronx Zoo’s Name A Roach program is back for Valentine’s Day. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Five Democrats Socialist primary challenges are using the worry about the state’s pre-trial criminal justice reforms to stake out a position to the left of Democrats who have been considering a repeal to push additional ideas like restricting the use of solitary confinement, legalizing marijuana, and decriminalizing sex work. (Alex Williamson or Brooklyn Eagle)

The Mini Brooklyn Flea Record Fair was announced for February 8 & 9 at the Winter BK Flea. (Bill Pearis for BrooklynVegan)

You never know where Justin Bieber will show up, looking for gluten-free pizza. (Jenna Bagcal for QNS)

It’s Pod Save Astoria week at We Heart Astoria, focusing on a different podcast originating from Astoria every day. Today’s podcast is “We’ll Be Right Back” with Astoria locals Kevin Ross and Brian Dean. (Claire Leaden for We Heart Astoria)

The Triboro Line, which would connect Bay Ridge to Astoria to the Bronx, is one tiny step closer to becoming a reality. It has miles to go, but each step forward is still progress. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

Transit Workers Union Local 100 are also in support of the project. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

Video: This video game parody of Hudson Yards was both very funny and also the most perplexing thing I’ve seen in a long time. (Ethan Gach for Kotaku)

Video: Say hello to a belter kingfisher, which is a bird, on Randalls Island. (D. Bruce Yolton for Urban Hawks)

The best soups and stews you can get in the city. (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

The Briefly for January 22, 2020 – The “You’ll Never Escape A Fart On These New Subway Cars” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The fanciest Duane Reade, Pete Wells defends loud restaurants, the MTA hired six new white and male executives, Brooklyn’s new democratic leader & more

Today – Low: 29˚ High: 39˚
Clear throughout the day.

Governor Andrew Cuomo released his 2021 executive budget proposal in Albany, a $178 billion spending plan, including a 1.9% increase over 2020. (Samar Khurshid for Gotham Gazette)

In one attempt to fix the state’s $6.1 billion deficit, the governor is putting a focus on cutting the state’s Medicaid costs by $2.5 billion. (Jesse McKinley and Luis Ferré-Sadurní for NY Times)

Part of the state budget is an increase of $826 million to education funding, bringing it to $28.5 billion for the year, but it still falls short of the $2 billion state officials requested in December. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork Metro)

Take your first look at the new kind of subway cars featuring no doors between cars, wider doors, security cameras, and more real-time information. (Elise Czajkowski for 1010 WINS)

The surrounding a wall that would visually separate a privately-owned public space inside Hudson Yards from the from the High Line and would block the High Line’s views of the space highlights the problem with private developers building public spaces. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

Photos: Here is the city’s fanciest Duane Reade, and it’s on Wall St of course. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

City Council Member Jimmy Van Bramer dropped out of the race for Queens borough president, citing family reasons. (Christian Murray and Allie Griffin for Jackson Heights Post)

We’ll just go with the headline for this one. Making Sauce With Instagram’s Mildly Furious, Exceedingly Horny Italian Uncle (Rachel Handler for Grub Street)

The blowback continues against Eric Adams for his idiotic comments on how newcomers should “go back to Ohio,” including pushing back on his thesis and bringing up how his campaign for mayor is accepting donations from the real estate industry. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

If you’ve ever gone looking for where Ebbets Field used to stand, you know how hard it is to find the small plaque, noting where home plate once was. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

The MTA will overhaul all of the 42nd St stations in one large $750 move to cut costs and speed up the schedule from 49 months to 36. Grand Central, Bryant Park, and Times Square stations are included as well as the ADA compliance for the 42nd St Shuttle and signal upgrades. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

Video: The story of Seneca Village, the lost Black community underneath the west side of Central Park. (Ranjani Chakraborty for Vox’s Missing Chapter)

In defense of the loud restaurant. (Pete Wells for NY Times)

Four people died across the city in four fires on Monday. The last of the four victims was 11-year-old Shirr Teved in Kensington. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Appellate judges upheld former State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s convictions in a real estate scheme and money-laundering, but overturned a corruption conviction. Silver will remain in prison and be resentenced by the trial judge. (Benjamin Weiser for NY Times)

Martin Luther King III, Lucy Liu, and Lin-Manuel Miranda will serve as co-chairs for the 2020 Census Council. (Alexandra Alexa)

Tips on upgrading your apartment on a budget. (Zoe Rosenberg for Curbed)

Public Advocate Jumaane Williams is calling on Manhattan District Attorney to resign based on how his handling of sexual assault accusations against Harvey Weinstein, Jeffrey Epstein and Dominique Strauss-Kahn show evidence of a dangerous pattern of leniency. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

The Brooklyn Democratic Party has a new chair in State Assemblymember Rodneyse Bichotte, the first woman to hold the post. (The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

The MTA has six new top-level hires, including a chief transformation officer, chief operating officer, chief innovation officer, chief people officer, chief technology officer, and chief procurement officer. Maybe among them should have been a chief diversity officer, because all six C-level hires are white men. Only 18% of the MTA’s 74,000 employees are women. (Dana Rubenstein for Politico)

Congratulations to Baseball Hall of Famer Derek Jeter on this year’s induction. The induction ceremony is July 26. (NY1)

After the United States’ first case of Coronavirus, the CDC will be screening arrivals to JFK from Wuhan, China for Coronavirus. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

What is it about old lofts and buildings styled like old lofts in NYC that tech companies love so much? (Winnie Hu and Matthew Haag for NY Times)

22 excellent restaurants for vegetarians. (Eater)