The Briefly for March 24, 2020 – The “Quarantine Rainbow Scavenger Hunt” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The first day of remote learning for NYC, C trains temporarily shut down after an MTA worker tests positive for COVID-19, Economy Candy adapts, and more

Today – Low: 42˚ High: 52˚
Clear throughout the day.

How to access unemployment and other government benefits right now. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

You won’t find a social media presence for Corona Courier, a community pairing bike couriers with people who need to self-quarantine. They deliver based on where their volunteers are located. If you’ve got some time on your hands and a desire to help, this is an opportunity for you. (Nicole Davis for Brooklyn Based)

The mayor is starting to talk about schools being closed for the rest of the year, despite being hopeful about letting students back in on April 20. (East New York News)

Here’s what NYC’s first day of remote learning looked like. (Alex Zimmerman, Christina Veiga, and Reema Amin for Chalkbeat)

The city’s playgrounds are open. Are they safe? “It would take a Herculean effort every five minutes, literally, that we simply can’t do.” -Mayor de Blasio. (Curtis Brodner for BKLYNER)

If you’ve been seeing rainbows in the windows of apartments around Brooklyn, welcome to the quarantine rainbow scavenger hunt. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Commuting in Corona Times” by Kera Hill is the new subway map that you have to see. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Three depressing charts that spell out the demise of the subways. (Streetsblog)

The work has begun to go through the articles that survived the fire at the MoCA archives on Mulberry St. (Julia Jacobs for NY Times)

Brooklyn has the highest count of positive COVID-19, but so far it hasn’t been included in the state’s plans for a temporary hospital to deal with the sick and Borough President Eric Adams isn’t happy about that. (Mary Frost for Brooklyn Eagle)

How do you enjoy life?” was the note left behind by Robert Herman, photographer, and Tribeca resident, before jumping to his death from his 16th-floor window. (Jeremiah Moss for Jeremiah’s Vanishing New York)

Video: Drone footage of American cities, nearly deserted. (Matt Novak for Gizmodo)

The idea behind closing off some streets to automobile traffic is to alleviate the density in the city’s parks. Think about it like an ongoing block party where everyone has to remain six feet away from each other. (Amy Plitt for Curbed)

Here’s a list of the streets that TransAlt and Bike New York are calling for closure. The most surprising on the list is the Jackie Robinson Parkway, which also includes the NYC marathon route, NYC street fair routes, summer streets and car-free day streets, and more. (Dave Colon for Streetsblog)

Turns out restaurants that were popular before coronavirus closed all the city’s restaurants are still popular now that we’re in “take-out only” mode. (Gary He for Eater)

Rao’s, NYC’s most exclusive restaurant, is offering take-out for the first time ever. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Does Scott Stringer realize he’s made a The Lox featuring Lil’ Kim and DMX reference when talking about why the census is important? (@NYCComptroller)

The city could be looking at a $6 billion hit during the projected six-month COVID-19 crisis according to City Comptroller Scott Stringer. As far as I can tell, that doesn’t include the $4 billion the MTA is asking for or the $1.9 billion the Port Authority is asking for. (Robert Pozarycki for QNS)

Photos: An empty NYC just before the PAUSE. (Jen Carlson with photos by Gretchen Robinette, Scott Lynch, and David “Dee” Delgado for Gothamist)

The MTA has announced that it has suspended fare collection on all of its local and select bus routes in order to keep its drivers safe from coronavirus. (Michael Dorgan for Jackson Heights Post)

I used to work with someone whose weekly routine included taking a lunch break and going to Economy Candy to stock up for her desk and apartment. If you're someone for whom candy is a part of life, Economy Candy is now offering CandyCare Packs to keep you sugared up. (Holly Louise Perry for Bowery Boogie)

Now is the absolute worst time to open a restaurant, right? Say hello to the brand new Sofia’s Panificio e Vino in Little Italy. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Mike Bloomberg claimed that he’d be paying his campaign staff through November regardless if he dropped out of the race. He dropped out of the race and 2,000 of his former campaign staffers are suing him for fraud in a class-action lawsuit. (Christopher Cadelago for Politico)

Rough Trade NYC closed its online store without an explicitly stated reason. Relatedly, Amazon announced that it was pausing restocking vinyl and CDs, so this could be a supply chain issue. (Bill Pearis for BrooklynVegan)

RIP Nashom Wooden, aka drag legend Mona Foot, a victim of COVID-19. (Mickey Boardman for Paper)

WABC 770 radio relaunched under a new owner. They had a party on March 16 for the relaunch on March 16, the same day the state limited gatherings to 50 and closed bars, restaurants, and gyms. Look at the photos of these idiots at a party in the radio studio. (amNewYork Metro, with no writer credited)

Community Gardens in the city are closed to the public “effective immediately” and “until further notice.” (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

The EPA is evaluating if the Coney Island Creek is eligible to become a Superfund site. The waterway has been polluted for decades after the historical manufacturing of dye and gas in the area. (Scott Enman for Brooklyn Eagle)

Gladson Ltd normally supplies Gucci, Paul Smith, Stella McCartney, and others with luxury fabrics, but they’ll be churning out a million facemasks for local hospitals. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Video: A walk by the Long Island City Waterfront at Hunters Point South Park and Gantry Plaza State Park at night. (ActionKid)

City Harvest is looking for volunteers to pack food for fellow New Yorkers. (Allie Griffin for LIC Post)

On Monday morning the MTA stopped running C trains after an employee tested positive for COVID-19. 30 workers have tested positive for coronavirus. (Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

The end of the month is coming. Are we going to see a rent freeze? (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

The list of the best things the editors of Eater ate and drank this week looks vastly different while sheltering-in-place. (Eater)

“I always knew that when the end came, New Yorkers would watch it from a bar. But this was not the end any of us had imagined. Crowding together, not just a survival skill but an engine of the city in normal times, was the most dangerous thing of all.” -Pete Wells for NY Times

The Briefly for Match 9, 2020 – The “Herald Square Smells Like A Toilet For A Reason” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: The latest on COVID-19, the nuanced argument around the NYPD’s possible manipulation of crime data, RIP Marnie the Dog, the hottest lunch spots, and more

Today – Low: 50˚ High: 66˚
Clear throughout the day.

I’m going to be breaking up The Briefly’s coverage of COVID-19 for a while. The coronavirus-related news will be at the bottom of the digest, so if you want to avoid reading about it, you may.

Because 2020 isn’t already weird enough, we are experiencing the earliest spring recorded in the last 124 years. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Photos: Inside The Nature of Color, a new exhibit at the American Museum of Natural History. (Michelle Young with photos by Mickey Blank for Untapped New York)

This week’s “Ask the MTA” features this amazing statement: “I am a consistent daily rider of the R-W trains at Herald Sq-34th Street. Every single day I smell urine.” They go on to ask what the MTA is doing about it, with an answer from Germaine Jackson, the group station manager that boils down to “we’re trying.” (amNew York Metro)

I have some bad news for the person who wrote that question. Herald Square has smelled like a toilet for years. In 2016, it was discovered that literal raw sewage was leaking onto the subway tracks from a building nearby. There has been nothing online in the remaining four years if it has been fixed. Maybe someone ought to look into this? (Nathan Tempey for Gothamist, 2016)

10 secrets of Manhattan’s Central Synagogue. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

If you’ve got millions upon millions of dollars to spend on real estate, please invest in The Briefly and also know that condo sales have begun in the revamped Waldorf Astoria. (C.J. Hughes for NY Times)

Henry Vidal, a veteran NYPD Manhattan officer, was arrested on Friday morning for allegedly assaulting his fiancée in Harlem. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Janelle Monáe will headline Pride Island 2020. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Eleven Madison Park on Madison Avenue was voted the second-best restaurant in America. Only Chicago’s Alinea was considered better. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Mayor de Blasio denies that the NYPD has been manipulating crime stats to justify supporting a rollback of criminal justice reforms, but the truth is way more nuanced. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

Attention nerds! Nitehawk Cinema in Park Slope is hosting free D&D nights on the second Wednesday of each month. (Bill Roundy for Brooklyn Paper)

How the hell did a handgun end up inside the federal Metropolitan Correction Center? Federal investigators searching for the gun also found phones, narcotics, and homemade weapons. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

New York Jets defensive lineman Quinnen Williams was arrested on Thursday night for allegedly bringing a handgun through LaGuardia Airport. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

A look at Granville and Pierre Pullis, two men who documented the birth of the city’s subways. (Jessica Leigh Hester for Atlas Obscura)

360 Video: From the 102nd flood observatory of the Empire State Building. (Action Kid)

Ram-dom is popular in NYC’s Korean restaurants following the success of Parasite, even if it isn’t technically a Korean dish. (Luke Fortney for Eater)

RIP Marnie the Dog, the adorable fixture at NYC’s indie rock shows after 18 beautiful years. (Bill Pearis for BrooklynVegan)

It’s a 3D replica of Manhattan that took over 1,000 hours to complete, and you can see it in the window of the base of the Empire State Building. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft)

It’s been 10 years from the start of the Gowanus Canal cleanup, here’s where it stands. (Brooklyn Eagle)

After the news spread of a Woody Allen memoir being published at Hachette Book Group, the same publisher of Ronan Farrow’s Catch and Kill, employees staged a walkout of their midtown offices. On Friday the company announced “We stand in solidarity with Ronan Farrow, Dylan Farrow and survivors of sexual assault,” and it would not publish the Woody Allen book. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Workers removed 2,000 boxes from 70 Mulberry St, the former home of the Museum of Chinese in America’s archives. The monumental task of saving the archives will take a long time, with the city working since the January fire to get the building to a place where the archives could safely be removed. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork Metro)

Who likes to party? According to the number of 311 complaints, Brooklyn likes to party. It also likes to complain about parties. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

A history of activism in Washington Square Park. (Adam Thalenfeld for NYC Urbanism)

The celebrities who call the Upper West Side home. (Michele Perry for StreetEasy)

Twelve teenagers are now under arrest in connection with the beating and robbery of a 15-year-old girl in Brooklyn last week. All of them are charged with robbery and gang assault. (NY1)

Thai Diner, Babs, and Doma have been added to Eater’s 13 hottest lunch spots in NYC (Eater)


Q&A with a CDC disease detective that is investigating NYC’s coronavirus cases. (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

The mayor is talking tough about how the city’s schools being prepared to take the threat of coronavirus seriously, but school staffs tell a very different story. (Jessica Gould for Gothamist)

Why can’t we just close the city’s schools? Because they double as social service centers for hundreds of thousands of poor students. (Eliza Shapiro for NY Times)

The New York Blood Center’s staff is taking precautions and your blood is still needed. The New York Blood Center is asking organizations not to cancel blood drives. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

The Gap’s Tribeca offices are closed after an employee tested positive for COVID-19. Everyone will be working from home for the meanwhile. (Tribeca Citizen)

Classes are canceled on Monday and Tuesday’s at Columbia University in a pre-emptive move after a someone in the university’s community was quarantined for exposure to the coronavirus. Residence halls are open, but all events and gatherings on campus have been canceled. (Neil Vigdor for NY Times)

If you’ve got a trip booked and you have some kind of insurance, double-check the policy. Most don’t include pandemics. The state hasn’t allowed “cancel for any reason” policies in over a decade, but new guidance is allowing them to be some bi insurance companies and travel agents. The policies are costly and only offer a partial refund, but if you have to book your trip this is likely better than nothing. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

New York is in a state of emergency. Governor Cuomo declared it on Saturday, which gives the state the ability to speed up hiring workers at health facilities and the purchase of supplies. Of the state’s 4,000+ who have been asked to self-quarantine, about 2,300 are in New York City. (Jesse McKinley and Edgar Sandoval for NY Times)

Amtrak’s Acela service between New York and Washington, DC will be suspended beginning Tuesday and through Memorial Day. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

After days of advocacy from the governor, the FDA expanded COVID-19 testing to Northwell Labs, New York’s first facility to conduct testing. The tests are manual, with the facility only able to process 75-80, automated testing has not been approved yet. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

St. Patrick’s Cathedral’s Sunday mass looked very different this week, with pardoners having to bring their own books, hand sanitizer at the alter and peace offerings from a distance. Cardinal Timothy Dolan wants churches to take precaution, but remain open. (Alyssa Paolicelli for NY1)

If you need a laugh during this time of very serious news all the time, the mayor has asked New Yorkers to avoid “packed” subways. It is very obvious that the mayor does not take the subway with any regularity. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

“For anyone worried about using public transportation, I can assure you that the MTA has taken aggressive and proactive steps to ensure the safety of our 8 million daily customers and our valued employees who keep it running.” (Pat Foye, CEO and Chairman of the MTA for amNewYork Metro)

If it gives you any inner peace, here is a photo of a man sanitizing a city bus. (MTAPhotos on Flickr)

The city will be giving grants to businesses with under five employees up to $6,000 to help them maintain employees in the face of economic hardship. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

Video: Times Square wasn’t in an “I am Legend” scenario over the weekend, but it’s not remotely business as usual . (Patrick Mulligan and Yoonji Han for NY City Lens)

Global pet adoption are at a standstill because of COVID-19. Pets that would be brought from abroad to New York to be adopted aren’t finding the lights or volunteers to make the trips. (Christine Chung for The City)

The Briefly for March 2, 2020 – The “Yes, We Are All Out of Hand Sanitizer” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news edition: NY and NYC get approval for coronavirus testing, the Islanders are leaving Brooklyn, the East Village’s best restaurants, and more

Today – Low: 46˚ High: 57˚
Possible drizzle overnight.

The MTA will shut down the F train on nights and weekends beginning on March 21 through next year to install and upgrade the line’s signals between Church and Stillwell Ave. Who on planet earth decided it was a good idea that one of the trains that beings people to Coney Island should be out of commission for the entire summer? (Irina Groushevaia for Bklyner)

February 2020 was the second-smallest snow on record in New York City since records began in 1868. Technically it snowed the smallest bit on Saturday, Leap Day. In all of winter so far, we’ve had 4.8″ total, compares to 61.9″ nine years ago. (Anne Barnard for NY Times)

Mayor de Blasio’s plan to convert basement apartments into legal apartments is hitting one significant problem: reality. (Kathryn Brenzel for The Real Deal)

The state has confirmed its first Coronavirus (COVID-19) case, and it’s in Manhattan. The woman in her late 30s who contracted the virus had traveled to Iran and is now isolated in her home. People who had close contact with the patient have already been identified. The New York Health Commissioner, Dr. Oxiris Barbot, has called the spread to other New Yorkers from this woman “low risk.” (Joseph Goldstein and Jesse McKinley for NY Times)

The city and state both received approvals for testing the Coronavirus, previously the city had been sending potentially contaminated samples via FexEd to the CDC in Atlanta. (Robert Pozarycki for amNewYork Metro)

Looking for hand sanitizer only to find out that it’s sold out? You’re not alone. Also, washing your hands for 20 seconds will prevent the spread of disease better than hand sanitizer. (Julie Creswell for NY Times)

For the COVID-19 paranoid person in your life: The Wuhan Virus: How to Stay Safe. (Laurie Garret, a Pulitzer Prize winning science writer, for Foreign Policy)

There are five works by Isamu Noguchi on display in New York City outside of the Noguchi Museum in Long Island City. Once of those pieces, an installation in the lobby of 666 Fifth Avenue, is in danger of being disassembled thanks to a pending renovation by the building’s new owners. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Staten Island’s City Councilmember Joe Borelli doesn’t like speed camera tickets or the Reckless Driver Accountability Act, he should know because he’s earned himself five tickets issued by speed cameras. 22 pedestrians have been killed by drivers in 2020. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Miss Staten Island Madison L’Insalata came out as bisexual and was promptly banned from marching in last weekend’s Staten Island St Patrick’s Day parade. Another pageant winner who showed support for her was also banned. Congrats Staten Island, you’re the worst. (CBS News)

Photos: Over at the Queens “St. Pat’s for All” Parade, the mayor, Speaker Corey Johnson Senator Chuck Schumer, AOC, and other federal and local officials marched and partied. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork Metro)

The former president of the Stonewall Democratic Club is eyeing a seat on the City Council in Queens. (Matt Tracy for Gay City News)

10 surprising places to discover on Queens Blvd. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Video: How many of the places can you see in this video of the East Village in the 1960s are still there today? (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Most of the city’s remaining public phone booths will be removed. Not on the list for removal are the phone booths which offers free calls on West End and 66th, 90th, and 100th Streets. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

Yes, plastic bags are banned in NYC, but the Department of Environmental Conservation is delaying enforcement of the ban until April 1. (Marie J. French for Politico)

Back in October, Andy Byford submitted a letter of resignation to the MTA that he would later retract, only to quit again at the beginning of the year. Freedom of Information Law requests have been filed to reveal the letters and the MTA claims to “not have it is its possession.” (Dana Rubenstein for Politico)

If you graduated high school in New York, you know the stress of the Regents exams. All that may change. (Alex Williamson for Brooklyn Eagle)

The Department of Education released a new recommended reading catalog that represents a wider range of diversity to the authors and book subjects. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork Metro)

It took drivers less than 24 hours to destroy the city-installed bike and “protection” on 13th St. An example of how plastic barriers are useless. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

An investigator with the Office of Special Narcotics Prosecutor, Stephen Abreu, punched a bouncer in the face and fired two gunshots inside the bar because his drunken attempts to flirt with women were failures, according to first-hand accounts and a police report. Stephen Abreu was suspended from work, arrested and charged with felony attempted murder, reckless endangerment, attempted assault, menacing, and more. For some reason, he was released without bail when his charges qualify for bail. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Say farewell to Islanders games at the Barclays Center. They’ll finally be returning to Long Island. (Norman Oder for Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park Report)

New York is the most tax burdened in the country according to a new analysis. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

28 restaurants that define the East Village. (Stefanie Tuder for Eater)