The Briefly for February 5, 2020 – The “Why Bother Having A Public Transit System At All?” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The Upper West Side asks for a study on street parking, the five best bacon dishes, the NYPD blames a jump in crime on the latest boogeyman, and more

Today – Low: 37˚ High: 44˚
Light rain in the morning and overnight.

A not completely accurate comic portrayal of New York’s zoos. (@pixelatedboat)

Here’s the full list of Catholic clergy accused of sex abuse in NYC. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

29 things that are regular here and weird almost anywhere else. (Mary Lane for New York Cliche)

Andy Byford’s last day on the job for the New York Transit Authority will be February 22 and advocates are starting to get worried about the MTA’s ability to move forward without him. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

The MTA is seeking proposals from ride-hailing services to help service transit deserts better by adding cars to bring people to the nearest subway stop during the hours of midnight and 5am. The details are nearly non-existent, like price and what locations would be served, but it’s a start. (Jose Martinez and Trone Dowd for The City)

Transit advocates are less than impressed with the MTA’s potential plan to subsidize for-hire car rides. Rather than address a real issue with transit availability, the MTA is punting to cabs to fill in the gaps it created. How long until the MTA uses this as an excuse to further cut back on night and weekend service? (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The city is working on a pilot program to bring a potential 5,000 basement apartments up to code in East New York, but at the same time they are also cracking down on illegal basement apartments elsewhere. (Kevin Sun for The Real Deal)

Robert Sietsema’s top five bacon dishes across the city. (Robert Sietsema for Eater)

What’s the top hotel in the city? Was your pick The Lowell Hotel New York on 62nd? According to US News and Reports, it’s #1. Check out the rest of the top ten. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Renderings: Check out what the pedestrian plaza will look like outside Grand Central this summer. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Does a perfect carrot cake exist? Does it come from Lloyd’s Carrot Cake in Riverdale? (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

The train that lost power between Secaucus and Penn Station left New Jersey at 6pm and didn’t arrive at Penn Station until 10pm for a ride that usually takes 15 minutes. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

17 hidden gems in Flushing. (Noah Sheidlower for Untapped New York)

All hail Pizza Rat, the unofficial subway mascot. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

New York’s tourism industry is taking a hard hit from the lack of Chinese tourists around the city, representing the second-largest foreign travelers in the world. (James Barron for NY Times)

The first person showing signs of coronavirus symptoms does not have coronavirus. The other two people showing symptoms have not been given a diagnosis. (Joseph Goldstein for NY Times)

The Knicks fired their team president Steve Mills. Whoever takes the job for James Dolan next will either become a very wealthy person or the biggest idiot in the NBA. (Joe Pantorno for amNewYork Metro)

Kids born later in the year are up to 70% more likely to be diagnosed as having a learning disability by the city’s public schools according to a new data analysis from the Independent Budget Office. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

It’s an inclusive sauna on wheels, and yes, it’s in Bushwick. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

The NYPD isn’t supposed to talk about public policy, so why are they opening their mouths about bail reform? Oh right, because they police themselves and basically feel like they can do almost anything they want. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

January saw a 20% drop in murder, a 24% drop in hate crimes and an 18% drop in rape, but the overall volume of crime was up 17% compared to last January. The Police Benevolent Association’s Pat Lynch has decided this overall jump can be blamed on the NYPD’s latest boogeyman: bail reform. With the reforms being on the books for one month, it is impossible to make a direct connection between the two. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Incidents of slashings and stabbings in city jails surged 10.4 percent last year and physical confrontations between detainees and corrections officers rose sharply to a staggering 37 percent—and the City Council Committee on Criminal Justice is trying to find out why. (Matthew Benedetti for NY City Lens)

The NYPD is phasing out its activity log memo books in favor of an iPhone app. The books have been in use since the 1800s and the new app will centralize the information and leave less room for fudging the facts. (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

22 go-to fast casual spots in the Financial District. (Urvija Banerji for Eater)

Brooklyn Bridge Park has new a public art installation at Pier 3. The large metal hoops are called “New York Clearing” by Antony Gormley and I’m going to withhold my judgement on this until I experience it firsthand, because it’s looking a little weird in the photos. (Gabe Herman amNewYork Metro)

An adult tree house is coming to this luxury Lower East Side high-rise. Of course it is. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

It took eight months, two closed-door sessions, and an hour of debate on the last night, but Community Board 7 on the Upper West Side has asked the city for a study curbside usage on the Upper West Side and explores the idea of paid residential parking permits. Eight months. (Eve Kessler for Streetsblog)

“The usual?” 26 restaurants where you’ll want to become a regular. (Hannah Albertine, Bryan Kim, & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

The Briefly for February 3, 2020 – The “Dropping the Ball, Not the Groundhog” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: How NYC became “Gotham,” Governor Cuomo’s ego pushed Andy Byford out, the mayor ignoes his BQE panel, the best restaurants in Sunset Park and more.

Today – Low: 41˚ High: 51˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.

16 places to celebrate Black History Month in NYC. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Interested in changing your political party affiliation before the June primaries? Act quickly, the deadline is February 14th. (Samar Khurshid for Gotham Gazette)

Staten Island’s Chuck the Groundhog didn’t see his shadow on Sunday morning, which means that an early spring should be on its way. At least no one dropped him. (Adams Nichols for Patch)

Let’s never forget when Mayor de Blasio murdered Staten Island Chuck by dropping him on Groundhog’s Day. Chuck died a week after the drop. (Abby Ohlheiser for The Washington Post)

The City Council has taken the reigns on leading the city, due to the oiler vacuum left behind by Mayor de Blasio’s complete lack of projected strength as the leader of the city. (Joe Anuta for Politico)

11 days before volunteers participated in an annual count of the homeless sleeping on the city’s streets, the mayor’s office attempted to misrepresent the actual number by attempting to find more beds for the homeless. (Mirela Iverac for Gothamist)

Mayor de Blasio is walking away from his own “expert” panel’s central recommendation for fixing the BQE because he believes the disproven fallacy that eliminating lanes of traffic adds to congestion, instead of actually reducing it. (Julianne Cuba for Streetsblog)

Here’s how “induced demand” works, a concept known since the 60’s: “on urban commuter expressways, peak-hour traffic congestion rises to meet maximum capacity.” (Benjamin Schneider for CityLab)

The city is going to start enforcing the law when it comes to overweight trucks on the BQE, per the panels suggestion. (Mary Frost for Brooklyn Eagle)

One thing’s for sure, we have less than five years if the city doesn’t do something about the BQE. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

The governor has been attempting to avoid political controversy sticking to him by assigning the most difficult problems to commissions and panels. Think back his sudden swooping in to present the L train shutdown. He assigned the problem to a panel who gave the alternative. Here are his current panels: Medicaid Redesign, Traffic Mobility, Climate Action, Digital Marketplace Worker Classification, and Public Campaign Finance. (Fred Mogul for Gothamist)

The story of how Governor Cuomo’s oversized ego made it impossible for Andy Byford to stay on a President of New York City Transit Authority. (Jim Dwyer for NY Times)

If you enjoy yelling at the MTA, they’ve added more pubic feedback meetings about their redesigned bus network in Queens. (Bill Parry for QNS)

After a horrifying case of animal abuse was uncovered at a Manhattan pet store, a bill in the state legislature would ban the sale of dogs, cats, and rabbits in pet stores across the state is gaining support. The bill would ban the sale from stores, but not from breeders. (Sarah Maslin Nir for NY Times)

The city’s first suspected case of coronavirus is being investigated at NYC Health + Hospitals/Bellevue. This is no reason to panic. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

A second and third case of coronavirus are already being investigated. Still no reason to panic. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

While coronavirus is on your mind, you should be worrying about the flu. his year we face a double-trouble scenario where it’s possible to get sick more than once during flu season. Two strains are hitting, so your chances of getting sick have doubled. The death toll from the flu this season is already at 10,000. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Where to eat sushi omakase for under $125. (Lorelei Yang for Eater)

“When you build high, folks will jump” were seven words included in an ArchDaily review of Vessel. Unfortunately on Saturday night, those words were proved true when a 19-year-old man committed suicide by jumping from the structure. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

The city’s had a goal of planting 20,000 new trees every year, but has only managed to plant less than 1/3 of that lately. The Department of Parks and Recreation points to the rising costs of planting and maintaining trees. (Len Maniace for amNewYork Metro)

Hiram Monserrate was expelled from the state’s senate in 2009 for committing domestic assault in a horrifying story. In 2012 he plead guilty for illegally using money from a nonprofit he controlled to support a run for senate and has only paid back $8,400 of $79,000 in restitution for stealing public funds. He’s trying to make a political comeback. (Vivian Wang for NY Times)

Would you live in Bay Ridge? Localize lays out a case with eight reasons to move to Bay Ridge. (Localize Labs)

The story of Taste of Persia leaving Pizza Paradise just took a turn. Saeed Pourkay, chef and owner of Taste of Persia is accusing that Pizza Paradise stole his recipes shortly after his restaurant was forced out of Pizza Paradise. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

A major overhaul to the city’s property taxes could fundamentally shift the tax burden from low- and moderate-income homeowners to wealthy neighborhoods. A panel has been at work on the proposal since 2018, but mayors have attempted to tackle the subject for over a quarter century. The plan wouldn’t result in higher tax revenues. (Emma G. Fitzsimmons, Matthew Haag and Jeffery C. Mays for NY Times)

The mayor is optimistic about getting the reforms done. “This is something I believe can and will be done during my administration.” (Janaki Chadha for Politico)

Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams says if elected to be mayor, he would regularly carry a gun. (NY1)

What’s the history behind New York’s nickname “Gotham?” (Noah Sheidlower for Untapped New York)

A truck driver killed a Bushwick cyclist while making an illegal U-turn in Williamsburg on Jan. 30, marking the first cyclist death of 2020. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper)

There’s a video showing how Pedro Lopez was killed, and it is shocking. Despite killing Lopez, the driver of the truck was not issued a ticket and the NYPD’s comment about it was there was “no criminality suspected.” (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The Department of Environmental Protection has reversed course and will fill the Jerome Park Reservoir basin in the Bronx. Previously the plan was to keep the basin empty. (Jason Cohen for Bronx Times)

Friday night’s “FTP” protests called for free public transit, an end to the harassment of the homeless, vendors and musicians in the subways, and full accessibility for people of all physical abilities throughout the transit system. The protest gathered at Grand Central Terminal at 5pm to maximally disrupt the evening commute and spread out from there. (Nick Pinto for Gothamist)

The Meatball Shop’s Lower East Side flagship location will be closing this weekend. (Bowery Boogie)

The best restaurants in Sunset Park. (Bryan Kim for The Infatuation)

The Briefly for November 22, 2019 – The “Christmas Trees Are Already On The Streets” Weekend Edition

The weekend subway changes, the MTA prepares for floods, the East River Greenway breaks ground, what it takes to wash the subway, and more in this weekend’s NYC news digest.

Check the disruptions before you go. No Q trains north of Kings Highway, no 3 trains at all, and changes to the 2, 5, C, D, E, F, and L lines this weekend. (Subway Weekender)

The strip club Sapphire has invited Kanye West to perform his Sunday Service in their venue for their entertainers, service staff, “and more.” They boast 10,000 square feet and 8,000 women on staff. Think he’ll take them up on it? (Brooklyn Vegan)

The Christmas tree stands have already arrived. (EV Grieve)

Did you see the photo of the Broadway Station subway stairs under water? The MTA was testing barriers to prevent subway stations from flooding on Thursday and it raised more than a few eyebrows. (Atlas Obscura)

The R179 subway cars are two years old, cost about $2 million each, and are less reliable than the R62s, which have been running since 1984. The new ones break down almost twice as much as the R62s. (The City)

$50 strawberries? Is the high end price of anything surprising anymore? (Eater)

A history of ice staking in the city. (6sqft)

Say hello to Detective Abdiel Anderson, the NYPD’s most sued cop. He’s been sured three times in the last six months for civil rights violations, which contributes to his over 40 lawsuits in his 16 years, costing the city over half a million dollars. The NYPD hasn’t stated if he’ll ever face discipline. (Gothamist)

The Met is in danger of losing its “A” credit rating. (NY Times)

NY Democrats prefer Joe Biden for president with 35% support. Second place was Elizabeth Warren with 14%, followed by Bernie Sanders with 13%. (Patch)

Here’s a first look at Sunset Park’s new Made in NY Campus. (Curbed)

A look at Teens Take Charge, a coalition of high school students pushing to have a say in how their public schools are run, and how the system could be more equitable. Monday morning will start a string of protests to call attention to the challenges of school choice. (Gothamist)

The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Light ceremony will be on December 4 at 8pm. The tree will be lit through January 7, so you’ve got plenty of time to see it decked out in its 50,000 LEDs. (Time Out)

If you want to make a week out of it, Tavern of the Green’s tree lighting is taking place on December 3rd at 5pm. (I Love the Upper West Side)

Photos and videos form the New York Botanical Garden’s Holiday Train Show. It opens on Saturday and runs through January 26th. (Gothamist)

The Bronx Night Market is the best outdoor food fair, according to the Times. (NY Times)

The city will break ground on the $100 million East River Greenway Link from 53rd to 61st streets. It’s expected to be completed in 2022. (amNewYork)

A sink hole nearly ate a construction vehicle in Park Slope on Thursday morning. A 9-by-7 foot hole opened on 15th St near 4th Ave. (amNewYork)

The most picturesque sites in the Village. (GVSHP)

10 of the best brunch spots in New York City. (amNewYork)

The governor vetoed a bill that would have created a “Bird-Friendly Building Council” to make buildings less likely for birds to fly into them. The New York City Audubon estimates up to 230,000 birds crash into buildings a year. (Curbed)

The mayor announced a new position in the city government to guide, oversee and report on decision-making algorithms going forward, but it creates an exemption protecting the NYPD from oversight. (Gothamist)

The city will close two jails next year, The Brooklyn Detention Complex on Atlantic Ave and one of the Rikers Island complexes, totaling 2,100 beds. The staff won’t be laid off and moved to other facilities. (Patch)

Video: The MTA’s mobile wash team is the Sisyphus of the subways. (viewing NYC)

From 2018 to 2019, 8% more of the city’s high schoolers enrolled in college. (amNewYork)

Everything we know about Market Line, the Lower East Side’s food destination at Essex Crossing that is opening today. (Eater)

Six of the best things to do in the city off-the-beaten path. (amNewYork)

Will there ever be enough odd museums in the city? “No,” says the Makeup Museum, opening in May 2020. (The Villager)

The City Council will ban flavored vapes. 30 members of the 51-member council signed on as co-sponsors of the legislation. (NY Times)

Queens DA-elect Melinda Katz is at odds with current DA Jack Ryan (that’s his real name) when it comes to ending cash bail, which is, and I believe this is a legal term, “tough shit” for Ryan. The state’s legislature passed a law that will end cash bail for misdemeanors and non-violent felonies starting in 2020. (Politico)

A deep dive into how NYC voted in 2019. (Gotham Gazette)

Robert Sietsema’s top five egg dishes around the city. (Eater)