The Briefly for July 23, 2020 – The “Abolition Park, Abolished” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Facial recognition ban in schools, de Blasio’s Open Streets plan “lacks ambition,” the NYPD’s misuse of plastic handcuffs, where to eat outdoors, and more

Today – Low: 76˚ High: 89˚
Possible light rain in the evening and overnight.

Congrats to Emily Gallagher for defeating 47-year incumbent Joe Lentol in the election for the state assemblymember in the 50th district. (Greenpointers)

With a return date for theater in New York City a complete unknown, Off-Broadway’s Playroom Theater in Times Square closed for good. (Matt Windman for amNewYork Metro)

Mayor de Blasio’s Open Streets plan “lacks vision and ambition,” just like the mayor himself. Instead of supplementing the city’s transportation and economy, Open Streets is a disconnected network with management challenges and does little to help. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

With a legislative session starting, expect the fight over nursing homes to be center stage for legislation. (Jesse McKinley and Luis Ferré-Sadurní for NY Times)

There will be no use of facial recognition in New York schools until 2022 at the earliest thanks to a new bill created in the state legislature. This was in response to a school district upstate introducing facial recognition into all of its schools. (Kyle Wiggers for VentureBeat)

In the early hours of Wednesday morning, the NYPD cleared out Abolition Park, the center of the City Hall occupation, in a move that was reminiscent of the NYPD’s clearing out fo Occupy Wall Street. (Jen Chung, Jake Offenhartz, and Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

Mayor de Blasio says it was coincidental that City Hall Park was cleared out shortly after President Trump threatened to send federal troops to New York City and the raid on Abolition Park has been planned for weeks. Let’s not forget that Mayor de Blasio implemented city-wide curfews to prevent Governor Cuomo from stepping in. (Rocco Vertuccio for NY1)

The city’s defense against federal agents? Lawsuits. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

15 public pools will start reopening in NYC, eight this Friday and seven on August 1. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz says three Queens residents and a man from Virginia have been arrested in connection with a gun trafficking operation in which dozens of firearms were purchased legally in Virginia but then sold illegally in Queens. (Ron Lee for amNewyork Metro)

The NYPD won’t strip the officer caught on video punching a homeless man on the subway of any duties, but will be put on “modified duty.”All from the same NYPD commissioner that praised the NYPD for “incredible restraint” during the George Floyd protests. (Erin Durkin for Politico)

Photos: Inside Susan Sarandon’s $7.9 million Chelsea duplex. Is that a bathtub in the bedroom? Yes it is. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

The myMTA app will now include information about how crowded buses are. (Adam Light for Streetsblog)

The city’s Doughnut Plant locations are closed due to financial fallout from Covid-19. This isn’t a permanent closure, but temporary while owner Mark Israel secures funding to reopen (hopefully) in September. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

Interviews with four restaurant owners on why to-go windows feel safer than table service. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

NYPD officer Joseph Recca was arrested and charged with conspiracy, drug sales, and drug possession in connection with an Oxycodone ring and a fatal overdose of a Long Island man last September. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Photo Preview: The Frieze Sculpture at Rockefeller Center will return on September 1 with works of art by Ghada Amer, Beatriz Cortez, Andy Goldsworthy, Lena Henke, Camille Henrot and Thaddeus Mosley. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

Exploring the idea of what would happen if there was a major blackout in the city. ConEd says there is an overall lowered use of energy due to all of the empty office buildings and businesses, but the NYC Prepper’s Group is getting ready anyway. Yup, of course there’s an NYC Prepper’s Group. (Virginia Breen for The City)

Despite recommendations to review their use of plastic cuffs, the NYPD continues to use them while making arrests, often leaving people in cuffs too tight for hours on end, threatening permanent damage. (Peter Senzamici for The City)

A look back at the city’s lost amusement parks. (Noah Sheidlower for Untapped New York)

Are you starved for some social distance? How about taking a canoe tour of the Gowanus Canal? (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Where to eat outside in Williamsburg. (Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

The city’s $3 million Graffiti-Free NYC program was cut from the city’s budget. (Elie Z. Perler for Bowery Boogie)

Modern Pinball on Third Avenue is closing due to pandemic-related financial hardship. (Elie Z. Perler for Bowery Boogie)

10 iconic streets and spots in NYC open for outdoor dining. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Thanks to reader Lisa for today’s featured photo of the storm that postponed John Trivialta at Parklife and A League of Their Own until Sunday night.

The Briefly for July 2, 2020 – The “Eating Outdoors in the New Eating Indoors” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The July 4th flyover, digging deeper into the budget, the building collapse in Carroll Gardens, mass transit returns to normal for July 4, and more

Today – Low: 76˚ High: 88˚
Clear throughout the day.

The MTA announced normal weekend service for July 4 to meet the expected demand for the city’s beaches on a combination of the first weekend with lifeguards and a holiday. (Robert Pozarycki for Bronx Times)

The Department of Defense announced a flyover of NYC on July 4 as part of the “2020 Salute to America.” Yes, definitely a year worth saluting. (Gillian Smith for Patch)

Video: Tuesday’s unannounced fireworks show was near the Statue of Liberty at 11 pm. At 11 pm, is there anything distinction between the Macy’s and illegal fireworks? (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Indoor dining is off the proverbial table for phase three, as expected. (Jesse McKinley and Luis Ferré-Sadurní for NY Times)

According to the NYC Hospitality Alliance, only one-fifth of bars and restaurants were able to pay their June bills on time. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork)

“Surely, some people will still insist on dining out anyway. Perhaps they’ve assessed that the chances of falling ill are acceptable, or that they’re ready to tough it out if they get sick. So allow me to recount what it’s actually like to catch COVID-19 — and I was one of the lucky ones.”
-Ryan Sutton for Eater, Why This Restaurant Critic Isn’t Dining Out Right Now

The argument for tipping 50% when dining outdoors. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

The NYC budget moves school safety officers from the NYPD’s budget to the Department of Educations budget, but it also imposes a hiring freeze on new teachers and reduces the number of school counselors. In the words of City Councilmember Carlos Menchaca, this is “not a people victory.” (Annie Todd for Gothamist)

“Does it mean I’m less safe? Where do you take the billion dollars from? Does it mean I’m more safe? Does it have any effect on police abuse? I don’t know what it means.” Governor Cuomo encapsulates the entire conversation coming out of the NYC budget‘s shifting around of the NYPD budget, pointing out that the city has to “redesign the whole relationship” between the NYPD and its citizens. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Also included in the city’s budget is an 11% cut to cultural affairs, which includes after-school programs, funding for the Cultural Immigrant Initiative, the Coalition of Theaters of Color, the Bronx Children’s Museum, BAM’s arts instruction in schools, the city’s four zoos and aquarium, and more. (Julia Jacobs for NY Times)

The city’s budget cut the Fair Fares program by $65 million, which helps subsidize low-income New Yorkers’ mass transit, in a financial hit to low-income New Yorkers and the MTA. MTA Chairpowerson Pat Foye says congestion pricing is a virtual impossibility” thanks to the federal government and the pandemic. (Jose Martinez for The City)

It’s taken over three years, but the first street in the city’s Great Streets pilot program is complete. Atlantic Ave in East New York and Cypress Hills was rebuilt with updates to traffic safety, new curbs, water mains, trees, and fire hydrants, and more quality of life upgrades. (East New York News)

“I don’t know what the landlord can do and where the rent strike can take us. It’s frustrating. You’re sitting down with all these things, but you don’t know what to do; you don’t know where to turn and everywhere you turn it’s “Oh, your income is not enough.”” – Five stories from New Yorkers of what it’s like not paying rent. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

How do white people in a mostly white neighborhood stand up for BIPOC? Lessons learned on being an effective ally from a protest in Greenpoint. (Melissa Kravitz Joeffner for Greenpointers)

How much does it cost in the first year of dog companionship in NYC? According to a new study, the price of a new best friend is $3,823.05 for the first year and $2,351 for each subsequent year. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

2020’s most popular dog breed in the city is the Havanese according to the website Rover. I’m not sure this includes mutts, like my Scooter and Pepper. (Gillian Smith for Patch)

227 Duffield Street will be considered for landmark status. The address has been at the center of a preservationist fight for over a decade, as the house was associated with the abolitionist movement and a stop on the Underground Railroad. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

Video: A look back in time at Harry Nugent, the city’s most beloved subway conductor. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

John Mullaly might be seen as the father of New York City parks, but he’s also credited for instigating the notorious Draft Riots of 1863 and for his racist views on Black people. That’s why activists are calling for removal of his name from Mullaly Park, a neighbor to Yankee Stadium and in a majority-minority neighborhood. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

After spending years as Mayor de Blasio’s mouthpieces, Press Secretary Freddi Goldstein and Communications Director Wiley Norvell are quitting. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork Metro)

How did you celebrate Bobby Bonilla Day on July 1? If you are Bobby Bonilla, you were paid $1,193,248.20 by the Mets to not play for the Mets, just like you have been for nearly 20 years and like you will be through 2035. (Alex Mitchell for QNS)

A former Pret A Manger employee filed a lawsuit, alleging that its employees “created and fostered a discriminatory and hostile work environment” against her while she worked in several of the company’s NYC stores. (Luke Fortney for Eater)

Info on Wednesday’s building collapse in Carroll Gardens. (Matthew Haag for NY Times)

New voter registrations were down 50% in NYC in 2020 compared to 2019, creating worries about the November elections and amplifying calls for online voter registration. (Christine Chung for The City)

Some Queens NYCHA residents have been living with no gas for cooking since before the pandemic started. (Clodagh McGowan for NY1)

Harlem’s Marcus Garvey, Jackie Robinson, and Wagner Houses pools will open on August 1. Across the city, 15 pools will open by August 1. (Brendan Krisel for Patch)

11 outdoor bars, parklets, rooftops, and restaurants to chill out at this summer. (Meredith Craig de Pietro for Brooklyn Based)

Thanks to reader Victor for today’s featured photo from Domino Park

The Briefly for June 28, 2019 – The “These Could Be the Grossest Places in the City” Edition

Subway disruptions during WorldPride, LaGuardia’s Airtrain gets a $2 billion price tag, NYC declares a climate emergency, and more today in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The MTA promised “full service” during WorldPride this weekend. That is, of course, mostly a lie and there are disruptions on 9 subway lines this weekend. (Subway Weekender)

The city’s 53 pools are officially open! (Time Out)

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s influence in the Queens DA primary was invaluable to Tiffany Caban, and since AOC won her own primary that took her to Congress, she’s learned to master Washington DC’s game on her own terms. (Politico)

No matter how gross you think the city’s public restrooms are inside of parks, you’d be making an under-estimation. (Gothamist)

The real estate industry is planning on making a constitutional challenge to the state’s rent reform laws, arguing their fifth amendment rights were violated, in an attempt o shot the case to the Supreme Court as quickly as possible. (The Real Deal)

How does the city prioritize road improvements? Take a look at the two streets recently paved in Willets Point and you might find your answer. In preparation for a film shoot, the Department of Transportation rolled out the blacktop carpet. (Queens Crap)

The City Council joined over 600 other localities around the world in declaring a climate emergencytaken its place in the Manhattan County Courthouse, thanks to the Municipal Art Society of NYC’s “Adopt A Monument/Mural” program. (Untapped Cities)

An argument in favor of the peanut butter ice being the flavor of the city’s summer. (Grub Street)

A look at the state legislature’s failed attempt to legalize marijuana through the lens of the Cuomo Catch-22. Everything is too early to talk about until it’s too late to consider. (Gothamist)

The best friend chicken in the city is on Avenue C. The top 20 friend chicken spots in the city. (Grub Street)

A fourth NYPD officer committed suicide in the last month. (Patch)

The state is waiting on the governor’s signature on a bill that would require the makers of floss, tampons, pads, condoms, menstrual cups, and other similar products (floss really stands out as the outlier in that list, right?) to list the ingredients used similar to how it’s done with food in an attempt to force companies to reduce the number of toxic materials used in their products. (Gothamist)

After the demolition of its most historic structures, what does Red Hook’s future look like? (Curbed)

Seven people were arrested in a drug bust in Bushwick that was focused on heroin being sold near an elementary school and inside of the Bushwick Houses public housing development. (Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

All of NYC’s Congressional delegates are asking NYC Schools Chancellor Richard Carranza to conduct lead-dust testing in public school buildings after a WNYC investigation found lead four schools. In addition, they asked for the results to be made public, and to have a plan to move students in schools where lead-dust is found. The mayor, instead of supporting their calls, is questioning the test WNYC employed. (Gothamist)

The Knuffle Bunny, a character created by Park Slope’s Mo Willems, will live in bronze statue form outside of the Brooklyn Public Library’s Park Slope branch. (amNY)

The New York Botanical Garden’s corpse flower started to open on Thursday at 2pm, so if you hurry you can still experience that “rotting meat in the sun” scent. (Gothamist)

Take a look at the designs of the LaGuardia Airport of the future that will bring it in line with “New York standards,” according to the governor. Hopefully, he’s referring to a different set of standards we have for the subways. (Gothamist)

The LaGuardia AirTrain’s cost was estimated at $450 million in 2014. In 2019? We’ve just arrived at $2.05 billion. (amNY)

The mayor stepped out of the debate in Miami and firmly planted his foot in his mouth when “accidentally” quoting Che Guevara. Now the entire country gets to feel what only city residents have felt. (NY Times)

If you’ve been outside Hook & Ladder 8 (Ghostbusters HQ), you’re seeing the remnants of Paul Rudd’s announcement that he’ll be in the next Ghostbusters movie. (Gothamist)

If you’re still stinging from being left out in the cold by MoviePass, the Alamo Drafthouse in Brooklyn is testing out a Season Pass at the cost between $20 or $30 a month. (BrooklynVegan)

There’s a small area of Bed Stuy that’s been plagued with a mysterious sound that’s been causing hangover-like headaches for more than a month. (Patch)

It’s so hot (how hot is it?) that the DOT was hosing down the Metropolitan Ave bridge because it wouldn’t close because of the heat. (Gothamist)

Video: Decoding the secret language of the city’s street signs, numbers, and letters. (Quartz)

Say hello to the baby peregrine falcons near the Bayonne Bridge who recently made their first flights. They have been given the World War II-themed names Rosie, Martha, And Juno. (Gothamist)

Google is trying to predict how crowded your subway, bus, or train will be. Even if they only ever displayed “very crowded,” it would be believable. (amNY)

A very specific list: Where to go when confronting your BFF about sleeping with your crush. (Eater)

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