The Briefly for December 13, 2019 – The “When Calling 311 is Not the Answer” Edition

Today’s daily NYC digest: The weekend’s weekend subway closures, all the info you need to avoid SantaCon, Bloomberg’s toxic legacy with lead, the best Italian restaurants, and more

Today – Low: 48˚ High: 49˚
Rain starting in the afternoon.
This weekend – Low: 33˚ High: 45˚

Lots of disruptions on the subways this weekend on the 1, 3, A, C, F, N, Q, and R trains. Check the scheduled shutdowns before you go. (Subway Weekender)

The Old Farmer’s Almanac, a competitor to the Farmer’s Almanac, has a prediction for NYC weather on Christmas day: “It should be a snowy, picturesque Christmas Day.” (Adam Nichols for Patch)

The mayor has a new plan to address homelessness, which centers around training city workers to call 311. An op-ed, credited to current and former outreach workers, the plan “is a massive misdirection of effort and resources, and has the potential to undermine the city’s ability to house and serve the people it is supposed to be helping”. A worthwhile read breaking down why this doesn’t approach a solution to the problem. (Gothamist)

How to survive SantaCon if you feel you both hate your fellow New Yorkers and absolutely MUST participate. (Alexandra Alex for 6sqft)

Here’s a SantaCon map of places to avoid on Saturday. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Why all the SantaCon hate? Check out some horror stories of SantaCon’s past. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

CUNY started a $1 million pilot program to address food insecurity among the students at BMCC. 50% of students enrolled are food insecure according to self-reports. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork)

Alcoholic candy? Yup. Smith & Sinclair has brought boozy gummies to New York. (Emma Orlow for Time Out)

Con Ed is planning on raising rates 16% on electricity and between 25% and 34% for gas over the next three years, and the chairman of the City Council’s Committee on Environmental Protection isn’t having it. The Public Service Commission must vote on the price hike before it can be implemented. (Bill Parry for QNS)

Mrs. Claus is paid about half of what a Santa is paid, making the pay closer to an elf than the big red fat man. (Michelle Cohen for 6sqft)

This new development planned for the Williamsburg waterfront is really goin to divide people. Giant, unconventionally shaped buildings? Yes. A promise to build a new public park? Yes. A man-made beach? Yup. (Devin Gannon or 6sqft)

Ecco! has been on Chambers St for over 25 years, but the end of the “Italian saloon” may be nigh, as a new application for a liquor license for another location fo The Grey Dog was filed for the address. (Tribeca Citizen)

Public defenders and justice advocates are calling on new NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea to abolish a policing tool he’s strongly defended: the department’s gang database. (Ese Olumhense and Eileen Grench for The City)

Are we so starved for nature in the city that we’re willing to pay someone for pinecones for $1 to $5 and tree branches for $10? Yes we are. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

More than 1,000 mourners streamed onto a Williamsburg street Wednesday evening to pay their final respects to two of the civilian victims of the Jersey City shooting. The crowd carried the bodies of the dead through the street before they were taken to their final resting places. (Noah Goldberg for Brooklyn Eagle)

Apartment Porn: Take a look at Giorgio Armani’s new $17.5 million penthouse on Central Park West. (Michele Petry for StreetEasy)

A first-year student at Barnard College was killed in an upper Manhattan park early Wednesday evening. Police say the young woman was slain during a mugging. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

Thursday morning was a shit-souffle of a commute, with nine different lines experiencing signal problems, door malfunctions, and activated brakes all before 9am. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

Winters seems like a terrible time to surf the East River, but Santa took to the water for half an hour in frigid temperatures. (Claire Lampen for Gothamist)

Six picks for top holiday windows to see this year. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

Photos: The 2019 holiday windows. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft, photos by James and Karla Murray)

Some of the city’s best and most affordable museums. (Gabe Herman for amNewYork)

New York City’s best museum gift shops. (Amy Plitt for Curbed)

The Infatuation’s favorite new restaurants of 2019. (The Infatuation)

Undocumented immigrants can get legal drivers licenses in New York starting on Monday, as the state’s Greenlight law is set to take effect. (Zack Fink for NY1)

The 5 best restaurants in Cobble Hill. (Scott Enman for Brooklyn Eagle)

Suit up for a Sunday in the life of Storm Marrero, the first Afro-Latina singing ringmaster for the Big Apple Circus. (Alix Strauss for NY Times)

A look at the recent struggles of Birdcamp, a store and boarding facility for birds. Birdcamp has been an institution for nearly two decades for bird lovers on E 53rd and is in danger of closing. (Alix Strauss for NY Times)

Mayor Bloomberg’s legacy with lead is toxic and steeped in institutional racism. (Alexander C. Kaufman for HuffPost)

The city passed a law banning vendors from the Dyker Heights Christmas lights in an attempt to ease the difficulties the neighborhood was experiencing with the crowds, but the vendors found a loophole and have come back. (Meaghan McGoldrick and Paul Frangipane for Brooklyn Eagle)

NYC’s 31 top Italian restaurants. (Eater)

The Briefly for December 9, 2019 – The “Amazon Comes Crawling Back” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: Rezoning leads to gentrification, the NYPD is being sued for racist policies, the worst meals of 2019, SantaCon on a boat, and more

The only late-night disruptions on the subways this week are on the 4, 6, D, E, J, and Q trains. Read up before you head out. (Subway Weekender)

Does rezoning lead to gentrification? A study looking at two rezonings during the Bloomberg administration in Park Slope and the Greenpoint-Williamsburg waterfront shows the populations of black and Latino residents dropped by the thousands while the overall population of the neighborhoods grew. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

With the results of that study, there is pressure on the City Council to pass legislation that would require the city to predict demographical changes before a neighborhood is rezoned. (Christian Murray for LIC Post)

Hello Amazon, look who came crawling back and is opening a new office in Hudson Yards without any taxpayer subsidies. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

>Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is for her stance on HQ2 in Long Island City. (@AOC)

The governor and mayor, whose administrations are responsible for the failed HQ2, are still pointing fingers. Cuomo is pointing fingers at the politicians who stepped up in opposition to the deal and de Blasio is blaming Amazon for walking away. (Amy Russo for HuffPost)

The NYPD were targeting black and hispanic people for minor offenses in the subways from 2011 to 2015. That’s not only according to a lawsuit, but also multiple sworn statements from NYPD officers. (Joseph Goldstein and Ashley Southall for NY Times)

The NYCHA has issued a “heat action plan,” which establishes a protocol to fix and prevent heat outages. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist)

What did your street look like in the 1800s? Check it out with OldNYC’s StreetView-like viewer. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

The top 10 secrets of Chumley’s, the Greenwich Village speakeasy from 1922. (Claire Leaden for Untapped New York)

Six Astoria restaurants with outdoor dining all year long. (Claire Leaden for We Heart Astoria)

A Park Slope substitute teacher is in trouble after telling his class of 1st graders that Santa isn’t real during a class about convincing. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

It’s been three years since the last gun buyback program in the city. What’s the history of buyback programs and why has it been so long since the last one? (Noah Goldberg for Brooklyn Daily Eagle)

A look at the history of the Queensboro Bridge. (Lannyl Stephens for GVSHP)

Are the governor and mayor’s strategies to help the city’s homeless working? The answer is somewhere between the data collected is “vague” and completely inconclusive. (Mirela Iverac for Gothamist)

Congressperson Max Rose is trying to save the Staten Island Yankees from obvilion. Part of MLB’s reasoning for announcing the elimination of the team is unacceptable time travel for teams and players not receiving a fare wage for their services. (Jaime DeJesus for The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

The list of restaurants ordered closed is back this week with a new entry into the 100+ point violation club. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Why is Mike Bloomberg lying that no one asked him about stop-and-frisk until now? (Amy Russo for HuffPost)

The best holiday markets in NYC. (Ameena Walker for Curbed)

31 literary icons of Greenwich Village. (Andrew Berman for 6sqft)

If you don’t like the idea of SantaCon you’re really not gonna like the idea of Fireball whiskey sponsored SantaCon party yachts. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Are you a bus? (Vincent Barone for amNewYork)

Congrats Tribeca, you beat 90210 as the nation’s most expensive zip code. (Kathleen Culliton for amNewYork)

Lucky Lee’s, which claimed to have “clean” Chinese food, is closed a year after it opened. (Serena Dai)

Forget the best. Here are the worst dishes of 2019. (Robert Sietsema for Eater)

The Briefly for November 21, 2019 – The “Raccoons Take Control, De Blasio’s MTA Influence Weakens” Edition

The best falafel, the city pays out $1 billion in lawsuits annually, Corey Johnson continues the tradition of playing politics with the budget, and more in today’s daily NYC digest.

Trash pandas rule the city’s parks at night, but now they are turning their little bandit-faced gaze towards becoming the kinds of the subterranean. Raccoon-related subway delays are up this year, way up. (Gothamist)

Let’s call it The Great Bell Blvd Oil Heist. The NYPD arrested Nigeme Rowe for stealing used oil from restaurants that put out the oil for recycling companies to be turned into biodiesel. (QNS)

The Daily News’ owners sold 25% of the company to the Tribune Company, the “destroyer of newspapers.” Sound promising. (Patch)

The city has paid $84.5 million annually to the victims of traffic violence caused by city employees in the Departments of Fire, Sanitation, Police, Transportation, and Parks. Add in all claims against the city? The number balloons to $1 billion. (Streetsblog)

The candy vendor arrested in a Harlem subway station last week plans to sue the city for $5 million for excessive force used by the four police officers who arrested him. (amNewYork)

The Queens DA will release its internal “credibility database” of cops who are suspected of lying in court. (Gothamist)

Are there enough places to buy coffee in NYC? Bandit is a new company that plans to open a coffee stand where you can buy a cup via their app with their eventual goal to be within a five minute walk from anyone who wants coffee. (Eater)

Broadway is Broadway, but Off Broadway, Off-Off Broadway and smaller theaters far beyond still has a strong economical presence. Non-Broadway theater generates $584 million annually and employs 3,000 people according to a new study form the mayor’s office. (NY Times)

Five holiday decoration tips for small spaces, including the very sad “put branches in the shape of a tree on your wall.” (StreetEasy)

Lyft and the New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) announced the formation of a new Equity Advisory Board for Citi Bike to discuss and evaluate Citi Bike’s equity strategy to better serve New York. (Curbed)

This look back at the history of 57th St starts with the quintessential Manhattan question: “Does anyone actually want to go to Midtown?” (Gothamist)

13 Brooklyn condos with the best waterfront views. (6sqft)

The case for ending free parking in NYC is getting stronger. (NY Times)

Here are the things that New Yorkers are looking for when they search for a new home. Here’s a hint: low crime and good light. (Localize Labs)

Add another name to the great fried chicken fight of 2019. From Philly, the latest contestant is Starliner in Bushwick. (Gothamist)

Evictions are down in Manhattan, Staten Island, Brooklyn, and Queens, but not in the Bronx according to a new report issued by NYU’s Furman Center. (Welcome2TheBronx)

The Times is searching for stories about your neighborhood bodega. (NY Times)

Is your regular hookup becoming “a thing?” Here’s where to go when you’re not sure that your friend with benefits might want to have the “what ARE we?” talk. (The Infatuation)

Mayor de Blasio’s influence over the MTA is diminishing as one of his appointees, Veronica Vanterpool, is resigning from the MTA’s board. Vanterpool was also the youngest board member at 44 and its only woman of color. (Politico)

The MTA’s automated bus-mounted camera ticketing system is coming to the 14th St busway and will be online on December 2 and for the first sixty days, drivers will only receive a warning. (Gothamist)

Ten city zip codes are among the United States’ most expensive when it comes to home prices at numbers 5 and 8, respectively. Tribeca and Hudson Square broke through to the top ten. (Patch)

It seems that as long as you say you “didn’t realize” you hit and killed someone with your car, the NYPD will absolve you of wrongdoing. (Streetsblog)

A second New Yorker has died due to a vaping-related illness. (Patch)

More than two dozen homes in Dyker Heights have begun their annual Christmas light transformation. (Brooklyn Paper)

In September of 2018, the Department of Sanitation begun parking garbage trucks overnight on 10th between 1st and 2nd, which quite honestly sucks for the people who live on that block. It took 14 months, but State Senator Brad Hoylman and State Assemblymember Deborah J. Glick have introduced a bill that will prevent the DSNY from parking on residential streets. As a result, the DSNY has decided to move its trucks to Pier 42 for the next three months. (EV Grieve)

Starting next year, some buildings in the city will be required to display a letter grade, similar to restaurants, showing how energy efficient they are. (NY Times)

Is Corey Johnson using the City Council’s budget to reward his allies and make political deals? Yes. Has this been common practice in the City Council for long before Corey Johnson because the speaker? Also yes. (Politico)

NYC needs more weird, like Mother Pigeon, the bird woman artist and animal rights advocate who makes acrylic pigeon sculptures and sets them up in Union Square. (Viewing NYC)

Inside a celebration of Fet Gede in Downtown Brooklyn, the Haitian voodoo Festival of the Dead. (NY Times)

The best falafel in NYC. (Grub Street)

Thank you to MG Ashdown for today’s featured photo!