The Briefly for October 18-19, 2020 – The “Phenomenal Cosmic Powers!” Sunday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: The plastic bag ban is back, empty office space is nearly at post-9/11 levels, how to celebrate Halloween, live music outdoors, and more

Today – Low: 55˚ High: 64˚
Partly cloudy throughout the day.

The state passed bail reform last in 2019 and it took effect at the beginning of the year. Since the beginning of the year, people have been poking holes in it. The latest is judges are using overly complicated partially secured bonds to keep people imprisoned. (Akash V. Mehta for NY Focus in partnership with The City)

In 2015, President Obama called the Gateway project better connecting New York and New Jersey “the most important project in the country.” Here’s a look at how the Trump administration has destroyed it. (Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

Apartment Porn: Rachel Maddow’s West Village apartment is for sale for $2.4 million. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

Back in March, the state’s legislature gave Governor Cuomo “unlimited” power and maybe it’s time to rethink that. (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

Bring your totes, NYC’s plastic bag enforcement kicks off for real on Monday. Bring your totes. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

16 bars and restaurants with live music outdoors. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

The pandemic drinking experience is still more convivial than drinking at home, but in bars forced to operate under elaborate and restrictive anti-COVID-19 setups, the experience sometimes more closely evokes the transactional nature of an airport Buffalo Wild Wings than a place where everybody knows your name.
-Ryan Sutton, When Will New York’s Bars Feel Like Bars Again? for Eater

A wedding with over 10,000 guests? It’s planned for Monday in Williamsburg, but the state is stepping in and demanding that the Hasidic wedding of a grandchild of the community’s leader is limited to 50 people. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

In a geographically and time-challenging move, The Queens Night Market has opened in Rockefeller Center from 11am-5pm. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

Video: Go beyond the pail with a look at what happens to metal, glass, and plastic recycling after the curb. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

“Trans women, particularly trans women of more color, are being killed with impunity, and it is past time to meet that emergency with real change that can end this epidemic of violence. Today I am calling upon the governor to acknowledge anti-trans violence as a state of crisis, and encourage the mayor and all of my colleagues in government to join me and the countless advocates who have joined us today in developing comprehensive plans that put an end to anti-trans violence once and for all.” -Public Advocate Jumaane Williams on two bills he’s introducing to the City Council to require medical professionals be trained to care for transgender and gender non-conforming patients and to include signage in all hospitals showing transgender patients’ rights and services available. (Paul Schindler for Gay City News)

A 2020 election reading list. (Sara Webster for Brooklyn Based)

“We don’t know yet how many restaurants will be razed by the pandemic. Anecdotally, the answer seems to be: a lot. Every few days, another restaurant closes, and every few days, I think, Oh, I never went.”
-Rachel Sugar, Mourning the Restaurants I’ll Never Get to Visit, for Grub Street

A look at the dozen vegan or vegetarian restaurants that have opened during the pandemic and how personal politics, sustainability, and price all play a part in their successes. (Emma Orlow for Eater)

Vegan “kind of Chineses” Fat Choy gets a Quick Bites review, “an instant winner.” (Scott Lynch for Gothamist)

11 helpful New York social distancing hacks. Don’t hold the door, the smell of perfume is a bad sign, and more. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Budgeting for an NYC rental: rent to income ratio. (Erika Riley for StreetEasy)

Fracking doesn’t seem like an NYC-centric story until you read about protestors who locked themselves to a fracked gas pipeline construction project in Williamsburg on Thursday morning. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper)

Manhattan’s empty office space is creeping towards post-9/11 levels. (Greg David for The City)

The Loisaida Open Streets Community Coalition is seeking volunteers to help set up barricades in the mornings/evenings. (EV Grieve)

Turns out Chirlane McCray, leader of the city’s Thrive NYC initiative and wife of Mayor de Blasio will not be running for Brooklyn borough president. There are eight candidates who have already created campaign committees. (Brigid Bergin for Gothamist)

Want to own a piece of the Waldorf Astoria? The hotel is auctioning off over 15,000 fine furnishings. (Justin Wu for Untapped New York)

The MTA is piloting a new air filtration and purification system on the LIRR and MetroNorth that the manufacturer claims can capture and kill 99.9998% of viruses and other germs through a three-stage process, including Covid-19. (Stephen Nessen for Gothamist)

Wilmer Ferrara attempted to climb the New York Times building, but only got as high as the sixth floor and got tired, waiting for the police to get him. He was arrested. (ABC7)

Meet Ronald Lauder, the billionaire Republican trying to fight a Democratic supermajority in the state. A supermajority would give the legislature much more power against Governor Cuomo when it comes to budget discussions. (Jesse McKinley for NY Times)

The NYPD’s oversight board will recommend discipline for Officer Wayne Isaacs, more than four years after the cop fatally shot Delrawn Small in front of his girlfriend and two children. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

NOAA has released their winter prediction for New York and it looks like we’re in for a dried and warmer winter than usual. (Adam Nichols for Patch)

Get ready, because restaurants can legally add a 10% “recovery charge to your bill starting this weekend. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

An independent commission tasked with reviewing institutional racism in the New York court system detailed a “culture of toxicity and unprofessionalism” among court officers across the state in a report from the Equal Justice in the Courts task force. (Noah Singer for Brooklyn Eagle)

A planned move of homeless men from the Lucerne Hotel on the Upper West Side to another hotel in the Financial District will proceed after a state Supreme Court judge declined to block the move. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Construction on the 2/3/4/5 between Franklin Ave in Brooklyn and Manhattan will interrupt traveling for 64 weekends over the course of 33 months. Oh boy. (Claude Scales for Brooklyn Heights Blog)

The best ways to celebrate Halloween 2020 in NYC. (6sqft)

The Briefly for September 8, 2020 – The “The Suburban Exodus That Never Was” Tuesday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: The Covid-19 school dashboard, how to track your absentee ballot, the best new pizza in Brooklyn, the BQX is dead, and more

Today – Low: 69˚ High: 82˚
Clear throughout the day.

The Board of Elections in the city launched an Absentee Ballot Tracking system to confirm they received your request, mailed your ballot, accepted your ballot, and how to fix it if they didn’t accept it. (David Cruz for Gothamist)

How helpful is New York’s Covid-19 infection rate? It’s the metric we’re using for keeping public schools open and arguing that we’re ready for indoor restaurants to open. It’s a self-selecting number and experts are pointing out that it’s artificially low in New York. (Fred Mogul for Gothamist)

A Bay Ridge couple was escorted off an NYC Ferry in handcuffs and given a summons for their refusal to wear masks. They also claimed they were being targeted because they were white. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Normally getting hit with a “here come the stink bugs” headline is fine, but in 2020? Give me a break. (Adam Nichols, Reported by Beth Dalby for Patch)

The mass migration to the suburbs isn’t happening. (Jeff Andrews for Curbed)

A quiet Trump administration rule change that could pull FEMA Covid-19 disinfection funding for the city’s subways and schools. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

City Comptroller Scott Stringer put forward a proposal to add 75 miles of bike lanes around 50 schools. (Dave Colon for Streetsblog)

The state is launching a dashboard to track Covid-19 cases in public schools. It’ll be available on September 9. (Jen Chung for Gothamist)

21 schools in the city will not reopen due to problems with ventilation systems, switching to remote-only instruction. (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat)

798 of the city’s 1,600 public schools have been approved for outdoor learning this fall. Schools can still apply, so expect that number to increase. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Apartment Porn: Make your way downtown and Vanessa Carlton’s Soho loft can be yours for a cool $15,500 a month. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Often you’ll see headlines about high-end restaurants or restaurants with chefs with a pedigree, but let’s celebrate the more normal. A 99 cent Pizza and hot dog joint opened up on Ave A. (EV Grieve)

Video: Héctor Zamora discusses “Lattice Detour,” his exhibition on the roof of The Met. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC)

Where to eat and drink with your dog. (Hannah Albertine, Bryan Kim, & Matt Tervooren for The Infatuation)

The city missed its own August 31 deadline for the final report in the investigation into the summer’s protests. The Civilian Complaint Review Board received 750 complaints from 250 incidents. What is the repercussion for missing the deadline? There are no repercussions. (Ethan Geringer-Sameth for Gotham Gazette)

A look at the Black Surfing Association, who organized their fifth paddle out to protest police violence against Black people. (Brigid Bergin for Gothamist)

J’Ouvert this year was marked with an eerily quiet Brooklyn with a heavy police presence with occasional small gatherings. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

The city’s recent uptick in shooting violence was felt at an unofficial J’Ouvert celebration, with five people being shot, including a six-year-old boy. (Alan Feuer for NY Times)

Photos: It’s a tough bird to find, but a sora was spotted in Bryant Park over the weekend. (D. Bruce Yolton for Urban Hawks)

How Astoria’s Niko’s Souvlaki persevered through the pandemic. (Loulou Chryssides for Give Me Astoria)

Buglisi Dance Theatre and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts’ Table of Silence Project 9/11 performance ritual for peace will be streamed online. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

It looks like the Mets may have a new owner in Steve Cohen for about $2.35 billion. He’ll need to get 23 team owners to approve the purchase of 80% of the team. (Joe Pantorno for amNewYork Metro)

The shooting death of Henryk Siwiak, killed on 9/11/2001, is the last unsolved murder of 9/11. (Ephemeral New York)

Governor Cuomo continues to fight against taxing the ultrarich. (Luis Ferré-Sadurní and Jesse McKinley for NY Times)

Photos and Video: The NYC Deep Playa Night Ride, New York’s one-night answer to Burning Man, but on bikes and without the tech executives. (EV Grieve)

No, it’s not you, there are more mosquitoes this year than in years past. (Amy Pearl for Gothamist)

“Contingent and student workers have been disproportionately burdened by the NYU administration’s choices, and plans for Fall 2020 reproduce this inequity. High-level administrators and tenured faculty have been allowed to work remotely, while contingent faculty and workers must weigh health concerns against job security. This approach will compound existing inequalities, and will not keep us safe. We must make different choices.”
NYU: Keep Our Campus Safe petition

The Brooklyn Flea is bringing the open-air Chelsea Flea Market back on Saturdays and Sundays. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

The mayor won’t make a decision about anything unless he’s forced to, including his own pet project, the BQX. Instead of just saying “this thing ain’t happening,” he’s punted the entire project to the next mayor. (Allie Griffin for Queens Post)

New York Attorney General Letitia James suspended the collection of medical and student debt that has been specifically referred to her office for collection for an additional 30 days. (Norwood News)

How to break a lease in NYC. (Jordi Lippe-McGraw for StreetEasy)

The de Blasio administration withdrew its support for the YourLIC Coalition, the group of developers who were going to develop a 28-acre area on the Long Island City waterfront, the cursed spot o the Amazon HQ 2 development. (Christian Murray for LIC Post)

The story of Jess La Bombera, aka Jessica A. Krug, the white woman from Kansas City pretending to be Afro Latina and from the Bronx. (Ed García Conde for Welcome2TheBronx)

The most beautiful post offices in NYC. (Noah Sheidlower for Untapped New York)

The best new pizza in Brooklyn. (Hannah Albertine, Nikko Duren, & Bryan Kim for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Lizzy for today’s featured photo!

The Briefly for September 1, 2020 – The “A $3.75 Reduced-Service Subway Ride” Tuesday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: The latest with school openings, the mayor wants a vaccine before indoor dining returns, where to eat outside in Staten Island, and more

Today – Low: 71˚ High: 78˚
Possible light rain in the morning.

Today (Sept 1), the United Federation of Teachers’ executive board will meet to vote to authorize a strike at 3:30 pm. From a friend, I’ve heard the teachers will push for an October opening of school for in-person instruction. (Alejandra O’Connell-Domenech for amNewYork Metro)

Looking to make a temporary change in your address? The Times has some service journalism for you to make sure your mail gets delivered. (A.C. Shilton for NY Times)

Free bus rides are over. Front boarding started on Monday. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

A bus or subway fare could be raised a dollar, as hinted by MTA officials, paired with a 40% reduction in service, in an attempt to close the $9 billion gap in the MTA’s budget. (Todd Maisel for Brooklyn Paper)

Five cheap ways to improve the subway from a policy analyst from the Manhattan Institute. Not all of these ideas are good. (Connor Harris for Streetsblog)

There is no combination of state efforts that can address New York’s financial crisis. The full damage that the Covid-19 virus has laid upon New York state is $59 billion, meaning there is no possible way the state can tax its way out of this hole. Watch this argument carefully, because Governor Cuomo will use this to defend his decision to never increase taxes on the state’s super-rich. (Mark Hallum for amNewYork Metro)

The state kicked the can down the road, but October 1 is the new date for the tidal wave of evictions when the moratorium ends. (Caroline Spivack for Curbed)

The mayor created his own deadline of October 1 to either cut one billion from the city’s costs from labor or he would fire 22,000 municipal employees. On Monday, the day city employees were ready to hear about who was “at-risk” for being fired, the mayor announced that unions have asked for more time to resolve the issue. The sword of Damocles still hangs. (Brigid Bergin for Gothamist)

September 1 gives us two months left of outdoor dining in NYC. As bars and restaurants look ahead, the question becomes “How do we survive this?” A spotlight on Jeremy’s Ale House, who doesn’t see past Halloween, unless people are allowed inside. (Todd Maisel for amNewYork Metro)

The biggest question looming over the city might not be “when will The Briefly return to five days a week?,” but “when is indoor dining coming back?” The mayor’s answer seems to change every day. In the last week, he’s said that the school openings would dictate it, that it wouldn’t return until the new year, and now until we see a vaccine. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

How much is a life worth? Layleen Polanco’s family was awarded $5.9 million after her death after nine days in solitary confinement at Rikers Island while being held on $500 bail, a record for an inmate’s death. (Rosa Goldensohn for The City)

The NYPD has issued a “discipline penalty matrix” that outlines specific punishments for instances of police misconduct. This isn’t in response to recent violence from the NYPD against the citizens it is supposed to protect, but form the recommendation of a 2018 independent panel. Despite the matrix, the NYPD Commissioner has the ability to ignore the matrix. The NYCLU says this is no reason to celebrate because it doesn’t show a culture of change in the NYPD and Commissioner Shea and Mayor de Blasio’s comments appear to be on the side of protecting police officers. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

A 2017 NYPD “challenge coin” from East Flatbush is so racist you may have to see it to believe it that celebrates the “hunting of man” and features a caricature of a black man with dreadlocks with the shadow of a deer. (Jon Campbell for Gothamist)

Riis Park’s popularity in the last few years partially has Riis Park Beach Bazaar to thank. The lease for Riis Park Beach Bazaar is up and won’t be renewed. Instead, they have been invited to submit a proposal to compete with other vendors. (The Rockaway Times)

This is what life is like when you’re quarantined in an apartment with Miss Universe and Miss USA. (Kim Velsey for NY Times)

Gyms in the city will be virtually inspected before reopening on Wednesday. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Yeah, you’ve been to Governors Island, but have you been to the haunted basketball court on Governors Island? (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

The Sutphin Blvd-Archer Ave. and Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer E train stations will be closed from September 19 through November as the MTA replaces 5,500 feet of track and more than 7,800 feet of third rail. (Allie Griffin for Queens Post)

It’s pronounced “How-stun.” Here’s why. (Dana Schulz for 6sqft)

One of the three lawsuits blocking the Two Bridges megadevelopment was reversed, but it’s still not a green light to move forward. (Rachel Holliday Smith for The City)

The city’s land use review process comes back mid-month, which will mean Gowanus will become the epicenter of the fight over redevelopment in the city. (Amy Plitt for BKLYNER)

“The fight against Industry City has implications beyond the neighborhood. It has implications for any of us who see the city as a site of civic engagement, as a place where community thrives. It’s community, the very idea of it, that’s destroyed, as the privatization of neighborhoods grows bolder and less restrained.”
– Peter Rugh, Sunset Park is Afraid of Industry City’s Expansion, The Rest of Us Should Be Too for The Indypendent

The Mermaid Inn in the East Village is closing. (Erika Adams for Eater)

A look at waacking and its history from dance clubs in the city in the 70s and how it ended up as a Tik Tok sensation. (Ted Alcorn, video by Mohamed Sadek for NY Times)

Columbia University removed “pretty significant” slave owner Samuel Bard’s name from Bard Hall, with a promise to rename the building in the fall. (Amanda Rosa for NY Times)

Why was a statue of Christopher Columbus and the green space surrounding it in the Bronx’s Little Italy locked up? The Parks Department says it was a staff error. The statue has been protected by the NYPD since June. (Ese Olumhense for The City)

Former Queens DA hopeful Tiffany Cabán is expected to run for City Council in Astoria when Costa Constantinides’s term limit is up in 2021. (Allie Griffin for Queens Post)

Where to eat out on Staten Island. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)