New Developments, Policy

Photo by Nicolas J Leclercq on Unsplash

All city land use and rezoning processes have been temporarily suspended as a result of the coronavirus outbreak, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Monday. In an executive order, the mayor directed procedures “applicable to the city planning and land use processes” to freeze for the duration of New York’s state of emergency.

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Policy, Restaurants

NYC bars and restaurants can now sell to-go cocktails

By Devin Gannon, Tue, March 17, 2020

Photo by Kobby Mendez on Unsplash

To stop the spread of coronavirus, New York officials on Monday closed all restaurants and bars, with the exception of takeout and delivery services. The new rules, as mandated by Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Liquor Authority, allow businesses to sell to-go alcoholic beverages, including wine and liquor for the first time, as long as it is with a food purchase. This change in liquor laws will continue until April 15 but could be extended.

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NYC skyline

Photo by Nick Normal on Flickr

Eviction proceedings have been halted until further notice in response to the coronavirus pandemic, New York officials announced Sunday. Effective Monday at 5 p.m., all proceedings and pending eviction orders will be suspended across the state, according to a memo written by New York’s Chief Administrative Judge Lawrence Marks.

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Featured Story

Features, Policy, real estate trends

brooklyn brownstone for sale sign, brooklyn real estate, brooklyn brownstone for sale

Image courtesy of 6sqft.

FaceTime video tours, virtual open houses, and plunging interest rates; the real estate business in New York City in the time of COVID-19 isn’t business as usual. But as impactful and uncertain as the global pandemic is, it may not be bad for business. An important and unique attribute of this particular crisis, though, is uncertainty. There are new developments each day, and new answers–for public health and welfare, of course, but also for businesses affected by the virus.

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City Living, Policy

What you need to know about NYC’s school closures

By Devin Gannon, Mon, March 16, 2020

Photo via Pixabay

All New York City public schools will be closed for at least four weeks in response to the coronavirus, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Sunday. “This is a decision that I have taken with no joy whatsoever, with a lot of pain, honestly, because it’s something I could not in a million years have imagined having to do,” the mayor said. Starting Monday, the city’s nearly 1,800 schools will be closed until April 20 at the earliest. The city, which is the largest public school system in the country with 1.1 million students, has pledged to provide grab-and-go meals to students, open enrichment centers to serve children of first responders and healthcare workers, and supply 300,000 iPads to students without access to devices.

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City Living, Policy

Photo by Chris Barbalis on Unsplash

The only region in the country so far to come together in such a coordinated way in the lack of federal uniformity, Governor Murphy of New Jersey, Governor Cuomo of New York, and Governor Lamont of Connecticut announced on a conference call this morning an overarching set of rules to “flatten the curve” of the coronavirus spread. This includes no gatherings of 50 or more people, no dine-in at restaurants and bars, and the closing of movie theaters, casinos, and gyms. Any non-essential travel between 8pm and 5am every day is also strongly discouraged.

More details available here

Chelsea, Policy

Image: Velvet via Wiki Commons 

Lawyers for the city’s Department of Housing Preservation announced Friday that the Chelsea Hotel’s owners did not qualify to receive a Certificate of No Harassment (CNH)–the document required for them to continue renovations to convert the dilapidated landmark into a luxury hotel with apartments. The document is required under a decades-old law to protect Single Room Occupancy residences from tenant harassment. As The Real Deal reports, The city’s allegations of harassment are the result of tenant complaints that since owners Richard Born and Ira Drukier of BD hotels began work after acquiring a stake in the property in 2016, conditions like leaky ceilings, exposed electrical wires, high lead levels, vermin and lack of heat have made living there unsafe.

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affordable housing, Bronx, Crown Heights, Policy

The site of the proposed affordable senior housing building in Morrisania; Map data © 2020 Google

The city is looking to construct two affordable senior complexes with between 150 and 200 housing units each. The Department of Housing Preservation and Development on Friday released a request for proposals for two underused city-owned sites, one in the Bronx’s Morrisania neighborhood and the other in Crown Heights in Brooklyn. The developments fall under Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration’s “Seniors First” housing program, which aims to serve 30,000 senior households by 2026 through the creation and preservation of affordable housing.

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Photo by Alejandro Sotillet on Unsplash

At a press conference this afternoon, Mayor de Blasio informed New Yorkers that they can text COVID to 692 692 to receive updates on the coronavirus from the city. He also said that, as of now, the city’s St. Patrick’s Day Parade is scheduled to go on as planned on Tuesday, March 17th, as is the New York City Half Marathon this Sunday.

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Map data © 2020 Google

$20 for Clorox and Lysol sprays and $40 for a three-pack of disinfectant wipes–that’s how much a Midtown hardware store was selling its products for before getting caught and fined by the city. The store, Scheman and Grant on West 39th Street, may also have been trying to sell a bottle of hand sanitizer for $80. According to NBC, they created a list of prices for these hard-to-find products and told customers to check those prices before purchasing because returns would not be accepted.

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