All posts by Devin Gannon

Manhattan

Photo by Si B on Flickr

A farmer based in Brooklyn has come up with an idea that not only honors a historic black community but also gives back to present ones. Amber Tamm, a horticulturist and urban farmer who works at the Brooklyn Grange rooftop farm, told Fast Company about her proposal to convert 14 acres of Central Park into a farm that would feed Manhattanites in need.

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Brooklyn, New Developments, Sunset Park

Credit: Synoesis

Steiner Studios will open a second film and television production facility in Brooklyn, city officials announced Thursday. The city’s Economic Development Corporation and the Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment selected Steiner to open a 500,000-square-foot production space at Bush Terminal in Sunset Park, as part of the Made in New York Campus, currently being transformed into a garment manufacturing and media production hub. The studio has operated a facility across 50 acres at the Brooklyn Navy Yard since 2004, one of the largest production spaces outside of Hollywood.

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Policy

Evictions in New York on hold until at least October

By Devin Gannon, Thu, August 13, 2020

Photo by Daniel Lee on Unsplash

The freeze on residential evictions in New York that began in March because of the pandemic will be extended until October 1, state court officials announced on Wednesday. Last week, Gov. Andrew Cuomo signed an executive order continuing the eviction moratorium for at least another month but gave the court system the final decision on how to move forward. A new memo from Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks says renters cannot be removed from their homes before October, but eviction proceedings filed before March 17 can resume, only if conferenced in front of a judge. Eviction cases filed after March 17 remain suspended.

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New Jersey, Transportation

Photo courtesy of Lyft

It may soon be easier to bike between two waterfront New Jersey cities. Hoboken Mayor Ravi Bhalla and Jersey City Mayor Steve Fulop announced on Wednesday plans to roll out a joint bike share program run by Citi Bike that will be compatible in both neighborhoods. Previously, the neighboring cities had agreements with two separate bike-share companies, which gave riders traveling between the areas nowhere to dock. Members of the program will be able to rent Citi Bikes in New York at no additional cost.

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Policy, Sunset Park

Photo by Sam on Flickr

The city will intensify test and trace efforts in Sunset Park after health officials identified over 220 cases of the coronavirus in the Brooklyn neighborhood over the last two weeks. Mayor Bill de Blasio on Wednesday announced that members of the Test and Trace Corps will knock on every door, call all 38,000 households, and direct residents to expanded testing in the community. “Our idea is to saturate Sunset Park over the next few days, literally reach every member of the community we possibly can, get as many people tested as possible, as quickly as possible,” de Blasio said.

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affordable housing, Harlem, Major Developments, New Developments

Target to open at major mixed-use development in Harlem

By Devin Gannon, Wed, August 12, 2020

BRP Companies

A deal to bring the National Urban League back to Harlem was reached last month as part of a mixed-use development project planned for 125th Street. In addition to affordable housing, office space for nonprofits, and the city’s first museum dedicated to civil rights, the $242 million project, known as the Urban League Empowerment Center, includes a new 44,000-square-foot Target, as the New York Post first reported.

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Brooklyn, Flatbush, Landmarks Preservation Commission

Street view of East 25th Street; Map data ©2020 Google

The Landmarks Preservation Commission on Tuesday calendared a block in Brooklyn’s East Flatbush neighborhood for consideration as a new historic district. The proposed strip on East 25th Street between Clarendon Road and Avenue D consists of 56 remarkably cohesive limestone and brownstone buildings built by a single developer between 1909 and 1912. The effort to landmark the block, which has been awarded the “greenest block in Brooklyn” by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden four times, is being led by the community, which asked the LPC to evaluate the area last year.

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Policy

NYC launches online portal with free eviction help

By Devin Gannon, Tue, August 11, 2020

An online portal launched on Monday to help New York City renters avoid eviction by providing free resources and legal assistance. The new website comes just days after Gov. Andrew Cuomo extended the state’s eviction moratorium for at least another month, only hours before it was set to expire. But with housing trials expected to resume in September in most of the city, tenant advocates say that no law currently in place protects the 14,000 households issued eviction warrants prior to the pandemic.

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Events, Roosevelt Island

A playful art installation has returned to Manhattan Park, a waterfront rental on Roosevelt Island. Every summer since 2015, an artist is selected to transform the building’s pool deck with a dazzling 8,500-square-foot mural. This year, as part of a partnership with Corcoran New Developments, Pliskin Architecture, K&Co, and Manhattan Park, artist Alex Proba from Studio Proba designed the sixth annual pop-up mural, with a mix of colorful shapes and forms spread out across the outdoor space.

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Policy, Transportation

Sally Librera, Senior Vice President of Subways, distributing free face masks to transit customers on July 23; Photo: Marc A. Hermann / MTA New York City Transit on Flickr

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority on Sunday asked Apple to develop a more simplistic face-recognition system to prevent riders from removing face coverings to unlock their smartphones while commuting. An update to the company’s Face ID feature is currently in the works, but in a letter to CEO Tim Cook, MTA Chair Pat Foye requested the technology be expedited. “We urge Apple to accelerate the deployment of new technologies and solutions that further protect customers in the era of COVID-19,” Foye wrote, according to the Associated Press.

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