The Briefly for January 29, 2020 – The “Hell Freezes Over on the Brooklyn Bridge” Friday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: The State of the City, Covid-sniffing dogs, the BQE remains the BQE, ranking NYC sinks on Tik Tok, a Snowy Owl in Central Park, and more

Today – Low: 17˚ High: 23˚
Windy in the morning.
This weekend – Low: 21˚ High: 31˚

NYC’s Vaccine Finder. The site isn’t great, but provide links/phone numbers to specific locations. As of writing, the city has less than 67,524 first doses left before a new shipment arrives.

Birds! A meta-rare Snowy Owl was seen in Central Park, the first spotting of one in the park since December of 1890. (Jake Offenhartz and Jen Chung for Gothamist)

A majority of city voters support adding more protected bike lanes, wider sidewalks, greenery, and spaces for children to play, even if it means sacrificing parking or space for vehicles. Also, the sky is blue. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist)

Hell has frozen over and the Brooklyn and Queensboro bridges are getting dedicated bike lanes by the end of the year. The Brooklyn Bridge bike lanes will take the place of one of the Manhattan-bound lanes of traffic, leaving the existing shared path above the road exclusively for pedestrians. The Queensboro Bridge lane will take over the north outer roadway. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

Video: Mayor de Blasio delivers his last State of the City address. (NYC Mayor’s Office)

In the address, the mayor outlines his theme for the speech, “A Recovery for All of Us,” including his pledge to vaccinate five million New Yorkers by June. (Emma G. Fitzsimmons for NY Times)

Covid sniffing dogs? Yeah, Covid sniffing dogs. (Fred Mogul for Gothamist)

A look at the human toll of the restaurant unemployment crisis during this never-ending pandemic. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

The mayor, full of unearned confidence, says that public schools will be open at full strength” in the fall. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

No one wants to hear this, but the fastest way to open up New York is to shut it down first. (Nick Reisman for NY1)


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A New Jersey man was caught on camera trying to set fire to a Queens restaurant called Ignited Restaurant & Lounge. (Chris Crowley for Grub Street)

The last link I’ll ever put in this newsletter containing analysis of Andrew Yang’s bodega video. (Andrew Silverstein for Grub Street)

Kal Penn, former member of the White House Office of Public Liaison and Kumar from the Harold and Kumar movies, endorsed Jimmy Van Bramer for Queens Borough President. (Allie Griffin for LIC Post)

The city created a $1 million, 280-page “vision plan” for making East Harlem resilient to climate change in 2017. It was completed in 2018. Like a magic trick, it has since disappeared. (Rachel Holliday Smith for The City)

A cheat-sheet to the Gowanus rezoning kerfuffle. (Brian Braiker for Brooklyn Magazine)

The Puppy Bowl is coming up on February 7, here are NYC’s five rescue pups headed for the big game. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Turns out the BQE didn’t stop being a giant turd because we’re in a pandemic. The mayor is “hopeful for help” from the Biden Administration when it comes to repairs. (Claude Scales for Brooklyn Heights Blog)

A city education panel early rejected a testing contract, temporarily stopping the controversial practice of testing incoming kindergartners for admission to gifted programs. How will the city’s gifted and talented programs move forward? 🤷‍♂️ (Christina Veiga for Chalkbeat)

Burgie’s, the new burger spot from Roberta’s, is now open (again.) (Kara Zuaro for Brooklyn Based)

Do you know the history of the railroad apartment. (Cait Etherington for 6sqft)

The City Council voted to approve legislation to create 4,000 new permits for street vendors in the city over the next decade and will create a separate law enforcement unit to oversee the street vending community. Opponents say that an increase in street vendors will drive business from restaurants. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

The Times Square Margaritaville resort is scheduled to open in the fall, including the only outdoor pool in Times Square. (Emma Alpern for Curbed)

The story of how Scott Green, a lifelong civil rights activist, was buried in a mass grave on Hart Island. (Corey Kilgannon for NY Times)

In the perfect metaphor, the barge full of dredged up black mayo from the Gowanus Canal fro the Superfund cleanup sank into the Gowanus. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist)

Did you attempt to vote in the 2016 election by text? You have Douglass Mackey to blame. (Nicole Hong for NY Times)

Meet Sink Reviews, the Tik Tok account rating NYC’s sinks. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Photos: Okay, so here are a bunch of photos of NYC in the snow. Maybe this is cruel based on Monday’s weather forecast. (Will Gleason for Time Out)

What to know about the City Comptroller’s race in 2021. (Rachel Holliday Smith for The City)

Everything you need to know about the special elections in Queens and the Bronx, including what neighborhoods are included, candidates, dates, and what happened to cause the elections. (Claudia Irizarry Aponte for The City)

NYPD Officer Carmine Simpson was arrested on child pornography charges after requesting and obtaining sexually explicit photos and videos from at least 46 minors. Simpson is one of more than half a dozen officers from the NYPD that have been charged with sexual crimes against minors in the last two years. (Jonah Engel Bromwich for NY Times)

20 NYC spots with restaurant week deals. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

The Briefly for September 18-19, 2020 – The “Two Protests Fall in Love” Friday Edition

The latest NYC news digest: School openings delayed, the most dangerous ride in Coney Island, details on SNL’s new season, a guide to eating outdoors, and more

Today – Low: 51˚ High: 69˚
Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
This weekend – Low: 50˚ High: 65˚

Human Turd Eric Trump has agreed to be interviewed by the state’s attorney general into the financing of Trump properties, but only after the presidential election. (Ed Shanahan for NY Times)

The latest figures has NYC’s unemployment rate at 16% compared to the rest of the country’s 8.4%. When the rest of the country’s unemployment rate was 3.5% in February, it was 3.4% in the city. (Greg David for The City)

Photos: At this point, it’s anyone’s guess why people are protesting outside Mayor de Blasio’s home. Actually, two independent protests met outside Gracie Mansion, and like a 2020 romantic comedy, they came together over their common hatred of the mayor. (Photos by Denice Flores Almendares for Gothamist)

In an almost cruel move, the mayor is still walking about laying off 22,000 city workers. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Three months after Mayor de Blasio announced that the NYPD would stop ticketing street vendors, the NYPD took to Twitter to boast about ticketing street vendors. Christine Chung for The Dity)

Mayor de Blasio halted the decision to evict hundreds of homeless men from a temporary shelter in a hotel on the Upper West Side, but families had already started being moved out of other shelters to make room for them. A perfect de Blasio decision, no positive impact but plenty of repercussions. The worst of everything. (Gwynne Hogan for Gothamist)

Here’s what you need to know about the de Blasio caused Upper West Side homeless shelter saga. (Valeria Ricciulli for Curbed)

It only took a few days after business leaders sent him a letter asking him to do exactly this, but our simp mayor is now starting to talk about how companies should be sending people back to their offices. Do not be fooled by the low “rate of infection” that city and state officials throw around. The effective reproduction rate in New York still indicates that the virus is spreading and not diminishing. (Erin Durkin for Politico)

The NY Taxi Workers union shut down the Brooklyn Bridge, the Queensboro Bridge, and FDR Drive on Thursday in a protest demanding debt forgiveness for cabbies hit hard by the pandemic. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Photos: Inside Keith Haring’s last apartment in NYC. (Michelle Young for Untapped New York)

A firetruck t-boned an ambulance early on Thursday morning in Brooklyn, killing the man in the ambulance and injuring 12. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Is the New York yoga studio dead? (Ted Alcorn for NY Times)

On Tuesday, I introduced a City Council bill [read it here] to clear the red tape that’s allowed for racially biased, anti-pedestrian policies. The bill will effectively decriminalize “jaywalking,” which, it should be noted, was a term invented by the auto industry to shame pedestrians.
– Costa Constantinides, Astoria’s representative in City Council, Here’s Why We Should Decriminalize ‘Jaywalking’ for Streetsblog

The hopes for the Industry City rezoning hinges on the owners adding 20,000 new jobs, but even members of the service workers union that represents the current workers are losing faith in the owners. The union technically supports the rezoning, but they still haven’t reached an agreement with the site’s management since it opened in April of 2019. (Claudia Irizarry Aponte for The City)

What’s the most dangerous ride in Coney Island? It might be the ferry if the city’s chosen location gets built. The city’s location is in a dangerously polluted creek that also has a few unexploded bombs sitting at the bottom of it. The locals if you could imagine, arent happy with the location. (The Coney Island Blog)

Remember I asked if the $50 fines on the subway for not wearing a mask? It took ONE day for someone to film two police officers not wearing masks in a subway station and being shits about it. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Photos: A hazy NYC as the smoke from the West Coast has reached the east coast. (Collier Sutter for Time Out)

North Brooklyn environmentalists and Pratt Institute have created an interactive map charting historic environmental pollution in Greenpoint, Williamsburg, and adjacent neighborhoods. (Kevin Duggan for Brooklyn Paper)

When SNL starts up again in October they will have a live crowd and Jim Carry will be portraying Joe Biden, Maya Rudolph will return as Kamala Harris, and Alec Baldwin will also be back for the new season. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)

Sam Moyer’s Doors for Doris, built from leftover pieces of stone from around the world and cemented into doors can now be found at the Doris C. Freedman Plaza entrance to Central Park at 60th St. (Shaye Weaver for Time Out)

Will the Hudson Yards need a second bailout? The city’s already provided $5.6 billion in tax breaks in hopes of making the money back. Sounds like a crazy idea? We already bailed it out after the 2008 crash. (Neil de Mause for Gothamist)

The city is opening a new lab to process Covid-19 tests and cut down wait times as school is almost in session and indoor dining is scheduled to start at the end of the month. The hope is that the lab will eventually process 40,000 tests a day. (Joseph Goldstein for NY Times)

How to get a virus test result in under 48 hours. (Emma G. Fitzsimmons for NY Times)

Listen, just get a flu shot. At this point, let’s get the upper hand on any illness we possibly can. (Zainab Iqbal for Bklyner)

California, Hawaii, Maryland, Minnesota, Nevada and Ohio are off the state’s quarantine travel list, but Puerto Rico has been added. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

Apartment Porn: Chloe Sevigny’s $3.25 million prewar Park Slope apartment overlooking Prospect Park is for sale. (Susan De Vries for Brownstoner)

A yeshiva in Queens continued holding in-person classes this week after the Mayor’s Office announced the school was shut down after more than a dozen students tested positive for coronavirus. Health officials returned and shut the school down a second time. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist)

Is the city ready for electric scooter ride-sharing? (Dan Rivoli for NY1)

7 things we still don’t know about the school year in NYC, but really should. (Reema Amin for Chalkbeat)

A look into how the city’s “Situation Room” for Covid-19 monitoring at schools. (Sophia Chang for Gothamist)

Here are the 56 schools with positive Covid-19 cases before the school year even starts in person. (Matt Troutman for Patch)

The city already delayed in-person classes once and now they’re doing it again. Students will come back into classes in phases, starting with younger children first. I was told by a friend that this is the plan that the UFT suggested weeks ago but the mayor balked at. High schools will open on October 1. Always a last-second decision from this city. (Elisa Shapiro for NY Times)

Some students, even if they’re participating in “in-person” classes, will be logging on and actually having their classes virtually while sitting in classrooms. The high number of students that opted out of in-person classes is causing a staffing problem. All of the inconvenience and fear of sending your child to a school building with none of the benefits of them learning in a classroom! (Yoav Gonen from The City and Alex Zimmerman for Chalkbeat)

The city’s blended approach to education will cost an additional $32 million a week. (Reema Amin for Chalkbeat)

With fall here, can we still go apple picking? (Eliane Glusac for NY Times)

The governor used the figure that the MTA lost $300 million due to fare evasion a year to justify hiring 500 new NYPD officers to patrol the subways. Turns out that number is very wrong. Can we have our money back instead of these subway cops? (Jose Martinez for The City)

The ultimate guide to outdoor dining. (Eater)

Thanks to Sandra for today’s featured photo of some turtle friends!

The Briefly for June 9, 2020 – The “A Real Reason for the City’s Curfew” Edition

Today’s daily NYC news digest: City Council investigates the police union, Mayor de Blasio’s staff protests him, what you can expect if you take the subway, and more

Today – Low: 71˚ High: 84˚
Clear throughout the day.

The state Assembly passed the Eric Garner Anti-Chokehold Act. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

The Times goes deep on the backgrounds and possible motivations of Colinford Mattis and Urooj Rahman, who were arrested for allegedly throwing a Molotov cocktail into a police vehicle. (Nicole Hong and William K Rosenbaum for NY Times)

Bronx’s District Attorney Darcel Clark found “no criminality” in the death of Layleen Polanco, the 27-year-old Afro-Latina trans woman who died in her cell in Rikers Island a year ago. Polanco was in Rikers because she was unable to pay a $500 cash bail. Adding insult to injury is DA Clark’s use of Polanco’s deadname rather than her chosen name. (Harron Walker for Jezebel)

Video: A man drove his car through on the sidewalk through a group of peaceful protesters. After a week of beating the shit out of protesters all across the city for an entire week, watch the NYPD civilly confront him while arresting him. Yes, he was white, how did you know? (John Del Signore for Gothamist)

I hope you’re sitting down. The city’s police watchdog on Monday released its first-ever report on the NYPD’s treatment of young people, ages 10 to 18 — and found that boys who are black or Hispanic are disproportionately victims of cop misconduct. (Eileen Grench for The City)

A federal judge has ordered the NYPD to incorporate their formerly secret lists of police officers with dishonesty issues into an early intervention system, which will use data to identify officers exhibiting disturbing behavior. (George Joseph for Gothamist)

When the dust settles, remember who publicly defended the NYPD. Department of Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg said she would not commit to reducing or eliminating her agency’s partnership with the NYPD. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

“In a critical time of vicious income inequality and racial disparity, he has shown New York City he is not an ally to progressives. Real New Yorkers take firm stances on tough issues…And it’s high time the Mayor decides whether or not he’s in favor of the NYPD’s aggression or people’s dignity.” -Nicholas Tamborra, the vice president of the Lambda Independent Democrats (LID), an LGBTQ political club in Brooklyn. (Duncan Osbourn for Gay City News)

The mayor may not be comfortable with defunding the police, but he’s 100% comfortable with defunding affordable housing. It’s an issue that he supposedly cares about, but in his proposed budget he cuts over a billion dollars from the Department of Housing Preservation and Development. (Kathryn Brenzel for The Real Deal)

Let’s check in with the latest progress on the L train construction. It’s not terrible, so there’s some good news today. (EV Grieve)

A guide to the city’s reopening. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist)

The MTA wanted 60 miles of new busways for phase one of the city’s reopening. The mayor, never one to completely rise to any occasion, provided 20 miles of new busways on Jamaica Ave, Manhattan’s Fifth Ave, Brooklyn’s Jay Street, and E 181st St for car-free roads and four more for dedicated lanes. He also made the 14th St busway permanent. (Gersh Kuntzman for Streetsblog)

The mayor said in an interview that it was his fear of Governor Cuomo taking over the situation that led him to institute the city’s curfew. Did all of this happen because Mayor de Blasio and Governor Cuomo can’t see eye to eye on anything? (NY1)

While this piece is about Mayor de Blasio defending the detaining of protesters for over 24 hours, there’s a tidbit about a rumor of NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea and Chief of Department Terence Monahan resigning. (Kathleen Culliton for Patch)

The mayor won’t commit to a number when it comes to defunding the NYPD, but he’s made the smallest of changes. A small portion of the budget would be diverted to youth and social services for communities of color, the dollar amount is unknown. The NYPD won’t be responsible for overseeing street vendors, giving instead to a civilian agency. (Michael Dorgan for LIC Post)

“We have been fighting for this for years now, and this is just the bare minimum.” The reaction to the NYPD not overseeing street vendors wasn’t exactly met with a huge reaction. The NYPD had previously written 18,000 tickets per year to vendors. (Tanay Warerkar for Eater)

The City Council’s Oversight and Investigations Committee is calling for an investigation of the NYPD union that released personal information on Chiara de Blasio’s arrest. The SBA, which City Councilmember Richie Torres called a hate group, tweeted her height, weight, and address, which is a violation of the city’s charter. SBA president Ed Mullins is already under investigation for declaring “war” on the mayor in February. (Brigid Gergin for Gothamist)

You can no longer hide behind your black wife and children, you are exposed now. We are in a time when we need your leadership and it’s not there.” -NYC Public Advocate Jumaane Williams about Mayor de Blasio. (Gloria Pazmino for NY1)

Looking for a safe space while protesting? The city’s theaters and museums are opening their lobbies to help you. (Devin Gannon for 6sqft)

Hundreds of current and former Mayor de Blasio staffers gathered for a protest of the mayor for his failure to protect Black and brown residents of the city that he swore he would shield from racist policing. (Terrell Jermaine Starr for The Root)

Photos: The Green-Wood Cemetery tribute to New Yorkers lost to Covid-19. (Noah Singer for Brooklyn Eagle)

Workers in Amazon’s Staten Island warehouse are suing the company to ask for safer working conditions. (Amanda Farinacci for NY1)

14 notable NYC restaurants and bars that have now permanently closed. (Bao Ong for Time Out)

Here’s what you can expect the next time you take the subway. (Howard Halle for Time Out)

Governor Cuomo announced the city can resume elective surgeries and ambulatory care. (Emily Davenport for amNewYork Metro)

Say hello to Scott Wiener, the owner of the world’s largest pizza box collection and the founder of Slice out Hunger and Scott’s Pizza Tours. How many boxes you ask? 1,550. (Anne Ewbank for Atlas Obscura)

Video: Rep. Carolyn Maloney, Suraj Patel, Pete Harrison, Lauren Ashcraft debate ahead of the primary for New York’s 12th Congressional District. (Gotham Gazette)

The Columbus Circle Target is expected to open this fall instead of its original July 19th date. (Mike Mishkin for I Love the Upper West Side)

Child abuse cases are down 51%, this is worrisome. (Nikita Stewart for NY Times)

35 restaurants supporting the Black community. (Hannah Albertine for The Infatuation)

Thanks to reader Chelsea for today’s featured photo!