If you’re looking for a way to become more involved in your neighborhood and the decisions that shape New York City, the city’s community boards are a good place to start. New York City is comprised of 59 community districts across the five boroughs: 12 in Manhattan, 12 in the Bronx, 18 in Brooklyn, 14 in Queens, and 3 in Staten Island. Formed in 1977, community boards are the city’s most local form of representative government. Though they’re strictly advisory–they don’t have official authority to make or enforce laws–community boards weigh in on vital issues from zoning and landmarks to transportation and parks to education and neighborhood services. Below, we outline what these city government organizations actually do–and how you can join yours.
Photo via Wiki Commons
Affordable housing is one of the hottest topics in the real estate market these days. It all started with Mayor de Blasio’s plan to preserve or build 300,000 affordable units by 2026, which has resulted in a slew of new lotteries, a recent update to the lottery policy to ease the process for immigrants and low-income New Yorkers, and a record number of affordable homes for seniors and homeless New Yorkers. But the topic is not without its issues, with many still wondering if the city is doing enough for affordability and if some of these units are really affordable. Whatever your opinion, there’s no doubt that affordable housing in NYC can get quite confusing. Ahead, 6sqft breaks down the different types of programs, how you can qualify and apply, and what happens if and when you get in.
The Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, One World Trade Center: all buildings that instantly come to mind when you think of the iconic New York City skyline. But more and more new skyscrapers are beginning to pop up in that classic view. And while it’s likely many an architects’ dream to contribute a design to the most famous skyline in the world, only a handful of world-renowned “starchitects” get to do it. Ahead, 6sqft has rounded up 11 starchitect-designed condo buildings that you can actually live in, from veterans like Robert A.M. Stern and Renzo Piano to some more up-and-comers like David Adjaye and Bjarke Ingels.
Despite being the City That Never Sleeps, New York does close down a bit on Christmas Day, with all sorts of museums, shops, restaurants, and other businesses giving their staff a break for the holiday. But for those of us who do not celebrate or won’t be spending all of Christmas at home squabbling over politics with family, there’s still plenty to do in town, especially if you get a little creative. Here are seven great options.
With its lit-up streets and sidewalk tree-sellers, New York is at its best during the holidays, especially if you can avoid tourist-clogged areas like Rockefeller Center and Times Square. There are lots of lovely festive spots to celebrate seasonal cheer, including local bars and restaurants that transform their spaces into holiday wonderlands, complete with themed drinks, bites, and lots of Christmas lights. Here are some of our favorites.
Don’t let apartment life stop you from hosting! Forget the turkey and tradition, or start one of your own with a November (or December) dinner to remember. You can even tackle the classic Thanksgiving, or have a low-key, festive “Friendsgiving.” The key is to find your own collection of small-space, less-fuss entertaining ideas and go-to goods. Below, a few suggestions to get you started.
Way back in 1992 when David Dinkins was mayor, a Department of City Planning report began, “New York City’s waterfront is a valuable but still untapped resource. Decades of declining maritime activity have left much of the city’s waterfront dormant. Today, after years of neglect and revitalization attempts stalled by the clash of competing interests, New Yorkers are coming together to fulfill the public’s claim to productive use and increased enjoyment of this resource.” Today, this transformation is perhaps the most evident along the Brooklyn waterfront, where views of Manhattan and beyond are enjoyed from contemporary towers, restored industrial buildings, and cool, open lofts. Ahead, we round up 13 condominiums with the best views on the waterfront in Brooklyn.
Photo courtesy of Grand Bazaar
New York is a city of shoppers, and though the retail landscape may be undergoing a sea change, there’s still a lot to be said for perusing yards of beautiful baubles and quirky crafts you won’t find online in the company of other shoppers and plenty of good cheer. There’s no shortage of holiday markets this season, with one in practically every corner of town; and each one is unique in its own way. The big Manhattan markets–at Union Square, Bryant Park, Grand Central Station, and Columbus Circle–get points for sheer volume, but some of the best finds can be had at smaller, more intimate neighborhood affairs. And they all sparkle with winter wonderland delights from ice skating and music to drinks, food, workshops, tarot readings, nail art, and family fun to keep shoppers’ spirits bright.
Photo by Dana Balding, courtesy of The Smith
The city that never sleeps also doesn’t take a rest for the holidays. Though we tend to assume most businesses are closed on Thanksgiving, in New York City, there are plenty of restaurants keeping their doors open and their ovens full of turkeys. Ahead, we’ve rounded up 40+ places where you can enjoy a holiday meal if you don’t plan on spending the day in the kitchen. From New York classics like Tavern on the Green and the ridiculously cozy Freemans to splurge-worthy picks like Gramercy Tavern and Union Square Cafe to affordable options like Veselka and The Smith to something with a little twist on the traditional like Ginny’s Supper Club’s jazz buffet and pizza spot Emily’s Turbo Turkey Sandwich.
Photo courtesy of 555Ten
There’s no arguing that New York is a city of dog lovers, but when most of us don’t have the convenience of letting our four-legged friends into the backyard, it can be a challenge. Thankfully, many of the city’s newest residential developments have realized how important it is to keep both pets and their owners happy and are incorporating amenities like dog runs, pet grooming, training services, and even “yappy hours.” Ahead, 6sqft has rounded up the top 10 buildings with the best amenities for dogs so that your pooch may always be tired and clean at the end of each day.