The Briefly for May 2, 2019 – The “The MTA, Like A Fish, Rots From the Head Down” Edition

A proposed constitutional right to clean air and water, the city’s best new restaurant, kick Lena Dunham out of Brooklyn, billionaires fight to keep the SHSAT, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The state senate passed a handful of environmentally friendly bills, including S.2072 is a bill in the state Senate that would add a constitutional right to clean air and water to the state’s constitution. (Grist)

A look under the microscope at a few of New York City’s billions of bacteria, fungi and microbes. Germophobes need not apply. (Business Insider)

The MTA’s board fails to reflect the city at every opportunity. The median income of the MTA board is $555,000, which is roughly 10x the median of MTA riders and underrepresents women and people of color. (Patch)

The MTA might be out of touch with the average rider, but the problem with the MTA isn’t the board. The man who won’t stop saying he’s not in charge of the MTA but keeps meddling in the MTA’s plans is the focus of a 170-page report from Reinvent Albany calls for 50 proposals for a more accountable and transparent transit authority. Page one? “The governor controls the MTA.” Now trying getting Governor Cuomo to admit it. (amNY)

The city’s animal intake centers take any kinds of animals, even this wallaby. How did a wallaby get into the city to begin with? (r/NYC)

The East Village’s best-kept secret was kept a secret until it closed. The Bijou was an underground movie theater and cruising spot and was also a throwback to Manhattan’s bad old days. The speakeasy has a history that goes back over 60 years that includes a music venue, a mafia-run club, and finally The Bijou. (Bedford + Bowery)

Here’s a look at the 2019-2020 NYC school year. (Patch)

Wegmans has an opening date: October 27. (Eater)

Sesame Street has a permanent location in Manhattan. 63rd St between Central Park West and Broadway. (Mashable)

For $2.65 million, you can be the person who kicked Lena Dunham out of Brooklyn. (6sqft)

There are still four remnants of the original 1904 Times Square subway station that exist today. (Untapped Cities)

The site where the New York Wheel, the massive Ferris wheel on Staten Island, still sits dormant and the city has no plans for the site six months after the project officially died. (6sqft)

A group of billionaires are trying to keep the SHSAT in place by financially backing the South Brooklyn Coalition for Quality Education. The purpose of removing the test from the specialized high school admissions process is to desegregate NYC’s school and bring more racial diversity to elite high schools (The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

There’s a pop-up cat cafe this weekend in the East Village, so if you’re looking to adopt a new fuzzy friend, this is your opportunity. (Bedford + Bowery)

20 outdoor art installations not to miss this month. (Untapped Cities)

NYPD Officer Daniel Pantaleo, whose chokehold led to the death of Eric Garner, is fighting to delay his hearing with the Civilian Complaint Review Board. (Gothamist)

Gothamist declared Wayla is the city’s best new restaurant, citing the food, green patio, and decor as standouts. (Gothamist)

A membership to The Sentry’s rooftop pool might be more than your portion of the rent, but that won’t stop you from ogling the photos of it. (Time Out)

A real estate developer is trying to bargain for more square footage by offering to build an accessible subway station for $11 million in Gowanus. (Brooklyn Paper)

The father of Aurilla Lawrence, who died after being run over by an oil tanker truck at the end of February, makes a plea to the mayor to take action to stop making excuses and prevent senseless traffic deaths. (Gothamist)

Did you take a photo of a couple who for engaged in Grand Central Terminal on Sunday? They are looking for anyone who took surreptitious photos of the event. (amNY)

The MTA is investigating excessive overtime payments to transit workers, in some cases hundreds of thousands of dollars per person per year. A 16% increase in overtime led to a $418 million payroll increase. (Gothamist)

Lyft’s attempt to fight against a $17.22 after expenses minimum wage for drivers failed. (Gothamist)

Meet the 2019 James Beard Award finalists for best NYC chef. (amNY)

Is the cost of living higher in New York or Los Angeles? Come on, you know the answer to that. (StreetEasy)

The state seemed to have momentum on its side when pushing a bill that would end religious exemptions for vaccines, but the bill seems to be dead in the water. Why? (NY Times)

Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer stopped by the Max & Murphy podcast for a 30-minute conversation about her lawsuit against the city centering around housing developments on NYCHA land, NIMBYism, dealing with the mayor, what she’ll do after she hets her term limit, and more. (Gotham Gazette)

17 bars with outstanding agave-based tequila drinks. (Eater)

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The Briefly for September 6, 2018 – A New Entrance to Penn Station, Ice Cream Noise Complaints, and More

Is Governor Cuomo’s endorsement toxic? Ice cream trucks generate over 1,000 noise complaints/year, Staten Island’s ferris wheel’s future is in question, and more in today’s NYC news digest.

A ballot initiative in November will give voters the option to lower the maximum donation in city elections from $5,100 to $2,000.

There were 1,279 ice cream truck noise complaints in the last year.

Does New York City needs the BQX? Curbed asks if the $2.7 billion streetcar project is worth the price after the recent revision to the plan.

The governor is rumored to announce a new entrance to Penn Station on Thursday morning. 650,000 use Penn Station on a daily basis and that number is expected to double in the next 15 years.

A flight from Dubai to JFK touched down with multiple people sick with flu-like symptoms. One of the people trapped on the “flu plane” was Vanilla Ice.

The World Trade Center/Cortland St subway stop opens this Saturday.

The culture is double parking!” Inwood’s bike lane drama is getting complicated.

“Equal Pay for Equal Work” has an origin story in NYC classrooms.

Landlords in the city owe more than $1.5 billion in fines. Kushner Companies owes the city over $500,000 alone.

The New York Wheel, Staten Island’s giant ferris wheel, may never be built. The contractor walked off the job in May and the whole project has become a series of lawsuits. The original plan had the wheel opening in October 2016 and costing $250 million. The current estimate is $600 million and it’s unknown if it will ever be built.

The Supreme Court decision that allowed government workers to not pay union dues is costing the city’s unions over $100,000 a week.

Will Governor Cuomo’s endorsement hurt Leticia James’s bid for Attorney General?

This year’s cronut is Duck’s Eatery’s smoked watermelon “ham.” Each costs $75 and they’re sold out through November.

The largest state park in New York City will open next summer in Brooklyn and will be named after Shirley Chisholm, the first black woman elected to Congress.

LIRR delays are the worst they’ve been in over 18 years. The MTA is fine.

Passenger service ended sixty five years ago on Staten Island’s North Shore Branch and there are still ghosts of the rail line marking the island.


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