The Briefly for June 26, 2020 – The “Welcome to Manhattan, $20 Please” Weekend Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The CBGB Caucus, phase three could start on July 6, vendors return to Rockaway Beach, Harlem gets a Black Lives Matter street mural, and more

Today – Low: 72˚ High: 85˚
Clear throughout the day.
This weekend – Low: 74˚ High: 86˚

2020 is the year that everyone wants to start selling nutcrackers. (Margot Boyer-Dry for NY Times)

Without federal assistance, the MTA is leaving nothing in the table when it comes to attempting to make up for a combined $15 billion of lost revenue over two years. Already discussed are the disastrous combinations of non‐personnel expense reductions, reductions in force, fare and toll increases, service reductions, and “long‐term deficit financing.” (Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

With the MTA’s trouble at the front of mind, let’s not forget that the city is waiting on federal approval for congestion pricing to enter Manhattan. A Cornell University study found that a $20 toll could reduce Manhattan’s traffic by 40%, greenhouse gas emission could be cut by 15%, and ridership on mass transit would increase by 6%. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

The MTA will rename two Brooklyn subway stops to include the name of Medgar Evers College, thanks to legislation from Assembly Member Diana Richardson and State Senator Zellnor Myrie. The new stops will be named Franklin Avenue-Medgar Evers College and President Street-Medgar Evers College. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

One of the hardest-hit industries during the pandemic is dog walkers. As life slowly edges towards normal and dog adoptions have spiked, can dog walker rebound? (Mili Godio for Bedford + Bowery)

City Councilmember Ritchie Torres has a sizable lead in the 15th Congressional District in the South Bronx. If that lead persists through the counting of absentee ballots, he could be the first out gay Afro-Latinx member of Congress. (Matt Tracy for Gay City News)

The NYPD promoted three people of color to chief positions. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork Metro)

David Afanador, the cop who allegedly put a man in an illegal chokehold in Queens days after it became illegal across the state, turned himself in and was charged with attempted aggravated strangulation and strangulation in the second degree. If convicted, he could face seven years in prison. (NY1)

Identifying 10 streets that would be ideal to close for outdoor dining. (Eater)

22 branches of the NYPL, QPL, and BPL will be opening on July 13 for grab-and-go service. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Grub Street floats an interesting idea: Should this be the end of the traditional menu? Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

We’re five days into phase two, which means the city is turning its eyes towards phase three, which includes basketball courts, dog runs, indoor restaurant service, nail salons, massage therapists, and other personal care services. The city is on pace to hit phase three on July 6. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

City Councilmembers Justin Brannan and Keith Powers have formed the “CBGB Caucus” as a way to help support independent music venues that remain closed and will remain closed through phase three, across the city. In a letter to the city’s Congressional Delegation, they outline support for a benefit for venues that have been completely unable to open due to the pandemic and emergency unemployment benefits for their workers. (Amanda Hatfield for BrooklynVegan)

The New-York Historical Society will, with approval from the city, be opening on August 14 with an outdoor exhibition called “Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine“. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

As stores slowly reopen, there’s a movement to preserve the protest art that adorned storefronts around SoHo. (NY1)

It’s less than reassuring to know that in the week of a primary, the NYC Board of Elections Director was fined for violating the city’s ethics law. The center of the violation is a hotel stay in 2018 that was paid for by Election Systems & Software while he was serving on their board, a company that the city purchases election machines and supplies from. He resigned from his position with ES&S later in 2018. (Brigid Bergin for Gothamist)

The local election to watch this fall will be Trump-supporting Republican challenger Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis trying to unseat Democratic incumbent Rep. Max Rose. Only a few days out from the primaries and both are on the attack. Rose called Malliotakis “a fraud who represents everything we hate about our politics.” (Rose Adams for amNewyork Metro)

Farewell to the Way Station, the Doctor Who-themed bar in Prospect Heights, who will not be regenerating after the pandemic. (Serena Dai for Eater)

10 chefs and restauranteurs discuss how they feel about reopening. (The Infatuation)

The New York City Council voted Thursday to legalize e-bikes and e-scooters for use on city streets, forcing the mayor to confront a reversal of his ill-conceived and poorly-executed crackdown of electric bikes. (Brendan Krisel for Patch)

Take a walk around the Rink at Rockefeller Center and it will become impossible to not see the 100 Pride flags flying around the plaza as a part of Rockefeller Center’s celebration of World Pride Day. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

If you can’t get out and do a socially-distant tour of LGBTQ+ landmarks across the city the NYC LGBT Historic Sites Project and CyArk created a 3D virtual tour. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

A look at Attorney General William Barr’s attempt to undermine New York’s federal prosecutors. (Benjamin Weiser, Ben Protess, Katie Benner and William K. Rashbaum for NY Times)

New York is releasing $65 million in federal money to help preschools and daycare centers reopen after the coronavirus forced many to close down. The preschools and daycares say it isn’t enough. (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat)

Harlem will be getting a Black Lives Matter street mural on Adam Clayton Powell Jr. Boulevard between 125th and 127th Streets. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

A look at the positive impact the city’s use of hotel rooms as homeless shelters can have. (Courtney Gross for NY1)

It won’t be happening this weekend, but along with lifeguards, food vendors are coming back to Rockaway Beach on July 1. (Alexander Jusdanis for Bedford + Bowery)

28 NYC restaurants with new outdoor dining. (Hannah Albertine, Nikko Duren, & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Chris for today’s photo of the new VBallentine mural in Crown Heights.

The Briefly for August 12, 2019 – The “LaGuardia Airport: A Hellhole of Hellholes” Edition

Zombie homes, free subways and buses on holidays, the ultra-rich New Yorkers funding Trump’s campaign, the Islanders are leaving Brooklyn, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

This week’s planned late-night subway disruptions are extensive, double-check the trains before staying out late. (Subway Weekender)

The second phase of the Hudson Yards construction involves something pretty common to NYC: delays from the MTA. (6sqft)

A history, explanation, and timeline of the LaGuardia construction. (amNY)

Saying LaGuardia Airport sucks in 2019 is underselling the sheer nightmare that is trying to escape the city from an airport where 90% of people are using private transportation to get to. Thursday’s disaster scenario of people walking on the highways and ramps to catch their flights was blamed on it being of the 45 peak travel days for the summer. Between the MTA’s stellar track record for buses, the Port Authority’s control of the airport, the DOT’s control of the roads and individual airlines’ construction on terminals, this is a problem that will persist for years.

Where’s the governor on all of this? He’s called this whole mess “unavoidable,” while also taking no specific action to make traveling to the airport any less hellish. If you’re traveling on any of the 19 “peak” days in August, the Port Authority suggests leaving multiple hours earlier to account for the travel disaster waiting for you. (Gothamist)

The “zombie homes” in Sheepshead bay are becoming a real problem for the neighborhood. (Brooklyn Paper)

New York state has a case against ExxonMobil for misleading its shareholders by lying about knowledge of climate change as early as 1977, and now the state has caught ExxonMobil attempting to intimidate the witnesses. Opening statements are scheduled for October 23. (Inside Climate News)

If you’re the type of person who hates having money and loves martinis, maybe The Algonquin Hotel’s $10,000 martini is for you, which comes with a diamond ring. (Untapped Cities)

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade replaced animals from the Central Park Zoo with balloons in 1927. The company turned to Greenwich Villager Tony Sarg to create the first iconic balloons for the parade. (GVSHP)

Incomplete data and sporadic surveys make measuring storefront vacancies difficult, but a study from the Department of City Planning shows the problem doesn’t exist everywhere in the city. Jackson Heights has the lowest vacancy rate of the areas surveyed at 5.1% compared to Canal Street, which is at 25.9%. (Curbed)

The history of how a natural gas pipeline turned into a 30-mile offshore windfarm. (The Indypendent)

This week’s forced restaurant closures do not disappoint with two different places being closed by the Department of Health, both scoring over 100 violation points in the process. (Patch)

The worry over rentable Revel scooters in Brooklyn and Queens is just that, worry. The company’s mission enjoys rare support from both the Department of Transportation’s Polly Trottenberg and Transportation Alternatives, and if they proved to be dangerous, you’d be reading about the danger they pose to pedestrians in The Briefly on a regular basis. (NY Times)

These are the city’s top high schools. (Patch)

The city is transforming two East Harlem lots into all below-market-rate apartments with 30% set aside for the homeless as part of the East Harlem Housing Plan. (Curbed)

Does no one ride the subways on major holidays because the MTA cuts service or does the MTA cut service because no one rides the subways on holidays? City Councilmember Justin Brannan will propose a non-binding resolution to request the MTA offer free subway and bus service during New Year’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Labor Day Thanksgiving Day, and Christmas Day in a similar fashion to how parking meters are suspended on those days. The MTA is, of course, against anything that would promote more people to take the train or buses. (6sqft)

85% of people stopped for mass transit fare evasion are black or Latinx, which echoes the unmistakable racist enforcement of stop and frisk. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

The Islanders are getting a permanent home in Belmont Park with a 19,000 seat arena for the team is dead last when it comes to attendance figures for the last two seasons. (QNS)

A list of the 1% of the 1% of New York City that is fueling Trump’s reelection campaign. Of course, the city’s worst musician and Knicks owner James Dolan is on the list. (Gothamist)

The condo board of 25 Central Park West is asking neighbor buildings for money to continue to fight their lawsuit against a protected bike lane that could have saved the life of cyclist Madison Lyden. (Streetsblog)

Mike Chen is testing the six top burgers in the city, which will come out ahead? (Viewing NYC)

Already tired of the 2020 primary race among Democrats? Here is a list of possible 2021 hopefuls for NYC mayor. (amNY)

As Sunset Park becomes more popular thanks to a gentrifying neighborhood and Industry City, Third Avenue’s dangers become more pronounced. The death of Em Samolewicz is one of eight fatalities and 2,000 injuries on Third Ave since 2011. (The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

A judge issued a stay and once again blocked the 14th St busway from becoming a reality. Every single headline about this story has used some variation of the phrase “slams brakes on” like it was legally mandated. (Downtown Express)

29% of the 15,500 structural components at subway stations were found to be worn or damaged, and that number is up since 2012. Comforting, right? (amNY)

Anti-ICE protestors shut down the West Side Highway at 26th St on Saturday for an hour. (Splinter)

Were you among the 10,253 people treated by the FDNY between 2011 and 2018 whose personal information, including social security number, was accidentally left on a hard drive and misplaced? (amNY)

The New York Philharmonic’s Free Fridays are returning, giving away tickets to people between 13 and 26 with an online reservation system. (I Love the Upper West Side)

Jeffrey Epstein is dead of an apparent suicide, but the investigation into his crimes is not. The FBI and prosecutors will turn their attention to his accomplices. (NY Times)

The city’s 19th cyclist was killed by a teenage driver on Sunday in Midwood. (Brooklyn Paper)

City Hall Park is now adorned by “Estructuras Monumentales“, works by 104-year-old local artist Carmen Herrera and will be on display through November 8. (Downtown Express)

A deep look into Corey Johnson’s plans to kill the city’s car culture. (Gotham Gazette)

35 solid happy hours. (Eater)

The Briefly for September 25, 2018 – 60,000 Delayed Trains Last Month, MTA Says Its Service is Getting Better

The MTA is “turning a corner” on providing better service, according to the MTA, four John Jay professors accused of misconduct and drug dealing, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

All 216 of the city’s public libraries will have voter registration drives today, which happens to be National Voter Registrations Day. Today is the perfect day to register to vote if you haven’t already.

Every day is a gridlock alert day this week due to the U.N. General Assembly. Avoid midtown more than you already do.

More than 60,000 trains were delayed last month. The ceiling collapsed at Atlantic Avenue last week. The MTA says that service is getting better. Can’t get much worse.

Police are looking for this homophobe who allegedly assaulted two men leaving a gay bar in Williamsburg.

The Palace Theater in Times Square is getting a renovation…and 46 floors of retail, entertainment and hotel.

JFK is getting a $10 billion makeover that won’t be complete until 2035, but that doesn’t include new runways, and as a result, does not increase the airport’s capacity.

A group of four John Jay professors are under investigation for sexual misconduct and drug dealing that goes back to 2014. Anthropology chair Anthony Marcus is accused of rape, anthropology professor Rip Curtis is accused of dealing drugs and sexual harassment, professor Barry Spunt and adjunct professor Leonardo Dominguez are accused of harassment. They are all currently under administrative leave.

The Nightlife Mayor Ariel Palitz is holding town halls in all five boroughs. Much like the job of the night mayor itself, the purpose of the town halls are…yet unknown.

Rates of gonorrhea and chlamydia are up in the city from last year but syphilis is down. Be safe.

The 7 train schedule will get beefed up during the L train shutdown with 14 additional weekday trips in April of 2019. The 6 train will also see two new trips a day. Are we getting legal electric scooters as a result of the shutdown too?

Southern Brooklyn residents can call 311 starting October 1 to coordinate curbside electronic waste recycling pickup.

The Housing Rights Initiative revealed that many landlords across the city allegedly lied about rent-regulated apartments in their buildings, and still got approvals from the city’s Department of Buildings. City Councilmember Richie Torres introduced legislation that calls for building inspections and calls for the DOB to find false statements by landlords. Te HRI report is based on 10,000 permits, which represent three percent of the permits issues over the last two years.

NYC subway station bathrooms in Manhattan, reviewed by Thrillist.

Brooklyn City Councilman Justin Brannan announced plans to introduce a bill that would require pet stores to only sell animals from shelters and rescue centers. New York state has a similar bill, but it has gone nowhere (which should not be a surprise) and the councilman is tired of waiting.

The E doesn’t stop at the 2nd Ave F station, unless Google knows something that we don’t?


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