The Briefly for November 19, 2018 – The “MTA is On the Edge of a Death Spiral” Edition

Holding affordable housing hostage in Brooklyn, Prospect Park Lake’s “Floating Goat,” plans to privatize the NYCHA’s operations, the best burgers in the city, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The house of the man who designed Central Park and Prospect Park sits in ruin on Staten Island. The New York Landmarks Conservancy is looking to restore Frederick Law Olmsted’s house and launched a Kickstarter to get it started. (Untapped Cities)

Here are the two options for the MTA fare hikes headed our way in 2019 as the entire system sits on the edge of a death spiral. (Second Ave Sagas)

A developer in Crown Heights is holding affordable units hostage if the city does not approve an upzoning their new development. (Bklyner)

In some parts of the city, limits on Community Board term-limits is a cause for concern when board seats already have a difficult time being filled. (Bronx Times)

If you’re questioning just how progressive de Blasio really is based on his support of Amazon’s LIC HQ2, you’re not alone. (The Real Deal)

The 24 best burgers in the city. (Eater)

Does the Sanitation Department’s boss, Kathryn Garcia, have too much on her plate? On top of being responsible for the city’s trash removal and snow-removal, the mayor also named her as the person to combat toxic lead across the city. (NY Post)

Can the private sector save the NYCHA? That’s exactly what is being considered. The plan would hand over management of repairs and renovations, but it will also sell unused air rights to develop new apartments on underused NYCHA land. (Curbed)

Signal work on the 7 train that started in 2010 is finally scheduled to finish at the end of the month. The work will allow extra trips when the L train shuts down in April. (Jackson Heights Post)

Why are some portions of Manhattan devoid of skyscrapers? The reason is less geological and more financial. (Laughing Squid)

1,500 affordable apartments were headed for LIC, but a certain online retailer’s plans for new offices have put that in jeopardy. (6sqft)

Breathe in, watch the mandarin duck in Central Park swimming in the snow, breathe out. (@notfapgod69)

What is “The Floating Goat” in Prospect Park Lake? (amNY)

The 25-year history of the Union Square Holiday Market. (6sqft)

Mayor de Blasio fired the chief of the Department of Investigations, and it’s hard to see that it was anything but a personal vendetta against a former friend. (NY Times)

The North Face’s new prototype store in Williamsburg includes a custom-scent made to remind you of Yosemite National Park. (Bedford + Bowery)

The stories of the stray cats of Red Hood. (Red Hook Star-Revue)

A checklist of restaurants and bars to check out before the L train shuts down, but make sure to check that the L train is actually running before venturing out. (amNY)

The best (and worst) spots to watch the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. (amNY)

The city is no longer without an FAO Schwarz. (Untapped Cities)

The chief responsible for the Harvey Weinstein case who led the NYPD’s special victim’s division (not executive produced by Dick Wolf) has been ousted. His replacement will be Deputy Chief Judith Harrison. (NY Times)

Despite the chaos and insane traffic during last week’s snow storm, the subway was… surprisingly functional. (NY Post)

Panna II, one of the city’s worst-reviewed restaurants, is one of the hottest reservations in the city. (Thrillist)

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The Briefly for November 15, 2018 – The “These Preparations Are Snow Joke” Edition

The best slices of pizza, the MTA’s new vacuum train, a lawsuit to stop de Blasio’s school admissions changes, NY’s library rivalry continues, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

The Amazon deal was a “hard bargain,” according to Mayor de Blasio. Anyone want to play poker against the mayor? (Politico)

The city is going overboard and is not kidding around with these snow preparations. (Gothamist)

10 of the best slices of pizza in NYC, according to Pete Wells. (NY Times)

The MTA has a new 600 horse power “vacuum train” to clear the tracks. Look for the VAKTRAK when you’re desperate for a train to come. (Gothamist)

If the city had an additional 1,000 ballot scanning machines that were not in use during the election, what the hell were they doing with them? (Gothamist)

“I want it to be real New York. I want it to be the local bridges, the local subways, the streets.” Here’s why Stan Lee’s superheroes lived in New York and not a fictional city. (NY Times)

Is WeWork, the city’s largest tenant, too big to fail? (The Real Deal)

The birth of mass transit in the city started with a horse-drowned “omnibus.” (GVSHP)

The MTA’s “Fair Fares” program, which provides discounted MetroCards to New Yorkers living below the federal poverty line, is finally launching. What’s the hook? There will be no single ride discounts. (Gothamist)

The amazing story of a cross-country book sorting rivalry between New York and Seattle. (Atlas Obscura)

The federal government’s plan to take over the NYCHA has been rejected due to a lack of sufficient funds ($2 billion didn’t cut it) and poor planning. (NY Post)

What does the NYC public advocate do? (amNY)

The NYPD arrested a man accused of fishing 346 checks out of mailboxes. Travis Everett is accused of fishing about $400,000 worth of checks from Queens boxes. (NY Post)

New Yorkers have always preferred the “worse” subway map compared to the “perfect” one. (Cheddar)

The Brooklyn Army Terminal stop on the NYC Ferry is temporarily closed while a new barge is built. It’s elected to re-open in three to four weeks. (The Brooklyn Home Reporter)

Parent groups are getting a federal lawsuit ready to stop Mayor de Blasio’s plans to change specialized high school admissions. (NY Post)

An art historian is offering paid tours of street art. Yes, it’s in Bushwick, how did you know? (Brooklyn Paper)

Realistically speaking, what can be done to stop the Amazon deal? Spoiler warning: Not much. (NY Times)

Never underestimate the allure of Nutella. The Nutella Cafe had over 100 people waiting in line for the grand opening. (Eater)

Meet App-App. It’s like Netflix, but for appetizers. Seriously. (Viewing NYC)

Eight neighborhoods that will feel the hurt when Amazon comes to town. (StreetEasy)

Get a load of this! The largest chocolate waterfall in North America (45-foot-long, 10-foot-high) is now in Union Square. (Eater)

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The Briefly for November 13, 2018 – The “The Final ‘Parts Unknown’ Episode” Edition

Pedestrian plazas bring an old problem to light, the subway car found in the Mojave Desert, Amazon’s Long Island City announcement is coming soon, and more in today’s daily NYC news digest.

Amazon’s choice of Long Island City has been the worst kept secret in some time. The latest rumor is that the announcement will make it official today. Not everyone is thrilled about Amazon’s potential Long Island City headquarters. State Senator Michael Gianaris and City Councilman Jimmy Van Bramer, who both represent Long Island City, have worry about the local infrastructure needed to support 25,000 additional workers and the corporate welfare that would be necessary to make this deal happen. (The Real Deal, amNY)

Every spot on Anthony Bourdain’s final “Parts Unknown” in the Lower East Side. (Thrillist)

The Alamo Drafthouse ain’t nothing ta F’ wit. The Wu-Tang Clan’s RZA is working with the Alamo Drafthouse on The Flying Guillotine, a kung-fu themed bar/museum/video store in Shaolin itself, Staten Island. (SILive.com)

“We don’t need him” Simcha Felder, the black sheep of NY’s Democrats, has some real work to do to get back in the good graces of his party. (NY Post)

Vaccine deniers in the Orthodox Jewish community are to blame for Brooklyn’s measles outbreak. (Vox)

Try not to freak out, but the Nutella Cafe is open in Union Square. (Time Out)

Happy belated birthday to the man who received a key to Brooklyn, Tracy Morgan. (NY1)

The NYPD is accused of downplaying a racist attack at the Church Ave Q station after a woman was called a “black bitch” by white man and was then punched and stabbed. (Gothamist)

White supremacist graffiti was found in Williamsburg’s Transmitter Park at the end of Kent St. (Greenpointers)

The story of the subway car on display on the corner of W 42nd and 6th Ave has a wild story from NYC to the Mojave Desert and back. (Gothamist)

The star atop the Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is 900 pounds, has 3 million Swarovski crystals, and was designed by Daniel Libsekind. (NY Times)

Andy Warhol (via the Whitney) took over the 14th St station at 8th Ave. It’s not a David Bowie level takeover, but it’s a nice departure from the usual ads. (Gothamist)

The city’s pedestrian plazas and public spaces have become a microcosm of the city’s problems with homelessness and opioid abuse. (NY Times)

In honor of Stan Lee, the most detailed map of Marvel’s New York City. (Inverse)

This is your year to take part of the Coney Island Polar Bear plunge on January 1. Registration is now open. (Bklyner)

The Old New York diorama, made in 1939, at the Museum of Natural History was updated with a new interpretation of the events and highlights the misinterpretations of the Lenape people. (Viewing NYC)

17 thrifty food and drink picks, from oversized cookies to karaoke, from air hockey to beer tours. (amNY)

Women working at LaGuardia earn up to $50,000 less then their male counterparts. (NY Post)

A group in Queens is working to landmark a newly rediscovered burial ground for freed slaves that dates back to the early 1800s. The site was in the process of being developed when workers discovered an iron casket. (Jackson Heights Post)

A bill headed to the City Council will eliminate the position of Public Advocate. There have been four Public Advocates since the office was created in 1993: Mark J. Green (first proposed 311), Betsy Gotbaum, current Mayor Bill de Blasio, and future Attorney General Letitia James. (amNY)

The pink tax extends to transit. Women in NYC spend $26 to $50 more on transit each month due to safety concerns. (amNY)

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