Indoor dining could resume in New York City only if police are able to enforce compliance of coronavirus regulations at restaurants, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Thursday. During a call with reporters, the governor said he could allow restaurants to open for indoor dining if the city creates a task force of NYPD officers designated to oversee compliance. Cuomo said he plans to discuss the issue with City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, who on Wednesday called for an immediate start of indoor dining, which has been allowed in every region in the state except the five boroughs.
Mayor Bill de Blasio extended the citywide curfew to Sunday and said it will start three hours earlier at 8 p.m. following a night of looting. The mayor and Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Monday jointly announced an 11 p.m. to 5 a.m. curfew and an increase of police enforcement following a weekend of protests. The NYPD announced that after 8 p.m. the only vehicles allowed south of 96th Street in Manhattan will be essential workers, buses, and delivery trucks. Likewise, Citi Bike has been required to shut down service for the duration of the curfew.
Photo of Sheep Meadow on May 4, 2020 © 6sqft
Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday said police will limit access to parts of some parks, as well as deploy additional Parks Department officials to patrol city beaches this weekend, with temperatures expected to be in the 70s. The NYPD will restrict the number of people allowed to enter the Sheep Meadow lawn in Central Park to avoid overcrowding and curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic. And police will again limit access to Piers 45 and 46 at Hudson River Park in the West Village and monitor crowds at Domino Park in Williamsburg for the second weekend in a row.
Roughly 2,300 city employees will be dispatched across the five boroughs to enforce social distancing rules, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Sunday. The so-called “social distancing ambassadors” will be stationed in public places to remind people to keep six feet from others and to hand out free face coverings. The mayor said New Yorkers have overwhelmingly done the right thing throughout the current health crisis, but reminders and enforcement are still needed. “We still need the ability to enforce these rules when needed and only when needed,” de Blasio said during a press briefing.
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority on Thursday unveiled its proposed $17 billion 2020 budget and its four-year financial plan as the agency grapples with massive impending debt. With a projected operating deficit of $426 million by 2023, the MTA wants to lay off 2,700 workers and raise fares twice by four percent over the next four years. Despite the impending financial crisis, the agency plans to spend nearly $250 million over the next four years to hire 500 police officers to patrol subway stations.
The waterfront park on Manhattan’s West Side is set to grow again. City officials are in talks with the New York Police Department to relocate a tow pound at Pier 76 to make way for a new section of Hudson River Park. THE CITY reported on Wednesday that while nothing has been approved yet for the site, which sits adjacent to the Javits Center, officials last month presented a preliminary proposal to Manhattan Community Board 4, signaling the beginning of the long-awaited plan to incorporate the pier into the park.
The city’s police department has launched a new surveillance system to keep an eye on homeless New Yorkers at more than 10 subway stations, THE CITY reported on Thursday. NYPD officers will watch feeds from more than 100 live cameras that show views from stations and platforms in order to respond to “quality-of-life and public safety concerns,” the city announced in August. The monitoring program comes as part of a city and state effort to address homelessness in the subways.
Image via BIG
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced on Tuesday that construction has officially begun on the new police station coming to the 40th Precinct in the South Bronx. The Bjarke Ingels-designed station house, located in Melrose at East 149th Street and St. Anne’s Avenue, will boast the first community event space ever to be at an NYPD facility.
When Ingels was selected as the architect in 2013 (the project’s second firm chosen after the first contract expired), the estimated cost was $57.7 million with a 2020 deadline. After the construction period was extended from two to three years, the cost of the total project jumped to $68 million and the station will now open in the spring of 2021. “This new precinct will strengthen the bond between community and police, which will ultimately help make the South Bronx and our City safer,” de Blasio said in a press release.
Photo of Trump Tower via Krystal T’s Flickr
The Secret Service has left its central command post inside Trump Tower after an argument between the agency and the Trump Organization over the lease agreement for the space. While the Secret Service previously placed its supervisors and backup agents one floor below the president’s apartment, the Washington Post reported that in early July, the agents were relegated to a trailer on the sidewalk. Although President Trump has not been to his eponymous tower since he was inaugurated in January, the Secret Service still treats Trump Tower as the president’s permanent residence.
While the President has yet to visit Trump Tower since his inauguration, the price of protecting the First Lady and 10-year-old Barron costs the city an average of $136,000 per day, according to the NYPD. Congress offered only $7 million to reimburse the city for the $24 million the police department said they have spent protecting the building between the period of Trump’s election and his inauguration. However, as Crain’s learned, that payment is not guaranteed, and NYC may have to compete with New Jersey and Florida, both places the president frequents, for the money.