Thursday, July 30, 2015

Reminder: Hearing on Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6 Towers Tonight (Thursday)

Rendering courtesy of ODA-RAL Development Services/Oliver's Realty Group
 A public hearing on the proposed 31- and 15-story residential towers at Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park will be held this Thursday, July 30 from 6 to 9 p.m. at St. Francis College, Founders Hall, 180 Remsen Street.

Turnout is expected to be big for this important hearing.

More details here: Hearing on Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 6 towers on Thursday

Opponents say the project planned for the park has not been proven necessary to support the park financially, and is actually a giveaway to a politically-connected developer. Mayor Bill de Blasio is pushing the development as a way to get more affordable housing built.

Brooklyn Bridge Park says it needs the money the project brings in to support the park. BBP is expected to pull an independent financial study (paid for by BBP) out of its hat, minutes before the hearing, proving that the project is necessary.


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Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Trouble at Ultra-Orthodox Jewish Schools in Brooklyn

Patch reports that a city probe has been launched into the educational programs at 38 ultra-Orthodox Jewish boys’ schools (yeshivas) in Brooklyn, and one in Queens.

Although the yeshivas are privately run and funded, many receive public funds for buses, books, food, etc., and are required to provide an education of similar quality to public schools.

The Brooklyn yeshivas — mostly located in Borough Park and Williamsburg, with a few in Crown Heights and one in Flatbush — aren’t even coming close, the complaint says.


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Brooklyn Firefighters Sizzle in 2016 FDNY Calendar of Heroes

Photo courtesy FDNY
 Check out "New York's Buffest" in FDNY's 2016 Calendar of Heroes.

February Firefighter Al Coombs is looking pretty good up there on the Brooklyn Heights Promenade...


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Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Was Brooklyn Guidance Counselor Given the Boot Because of Voodoo?

Via Voodoo Authentica
Guidance Counselor Stevenson Petit says the principal of  It Takes a Village Academy, in East Flatbush, Brooklyn, is trying to get rid of him because of his interest in the practice of voodoo.

According to Pix 11, Petit says Principal Marina Vinitskaya filed a complaint about him in 2012 (it was dismissed) and now is behind a letter explaining his position is no longer needed.

Voodoo, however, is not too far out of the norm at the school and nearby neighborhoods.

According to Voodoo Authentica, Brooklyn "is truly a hub of Haitian Vodou."

In Flatbush, there are about "50 voodoo priests" in a four-block radius," according to the Daily News.

And according to NY Magazine, "Severed goat heads keep turning up in nearby Prospect Park."

About 40 percent of the students at It Takes a Village are English language learners who recently came to the U.S. from countries including voodoo-friendly Haiti, Yemen and Africa, according to WNYC.


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Monday, July 27, 2015

Crokinole in Brooklyn; Drake Feud; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- North Carolina driver who killed a 6-year-old Brooklyn girl in a car crash was texting while driving. [WNCN]

- Opening for Nicki Minaj at the Barclays Center on Sunday, Meek Mill had some harsh words for Drake. [Hot New Hip Hop]

- Missing Prospect Heights resident Heloise Rathbone has been found in a Boston hospital. She is the granddaughter of acting great Basil Rathbone. [Patch]

- Crokinole -- a 19th-century game named after a Quebec doughnut -- gains a following in Brooklyn. [The Star]

- A Park Slope company is one of the last audio cassette-manufacturing companies in the world. [amNY]

- A Hasidic girl from Brooklyn wrote a clever poem that spread like wildfire online and became a hit in London last week. [NY Post]

- A pedestrian badly hurt when she was struck by a car while crossing State Street has been awarded nearly $500,000 for her injuries. [SI Live]


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After Epic Legal Battle, Brooklyn Judge Finalizes Sale of Long Island College Hospital (LICH)

Photo: MK Metz
A Brooklyn judge has signed an order finalizing the State University of New York’s (SUNY) sale of Long Island College Hospital (LICH) to developer Fortis Property Group, the Brooklyn Eagle reports.

The approval, after years of litigation and community opposition, clears the way for the development of the former hospital site in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn.

The tawdry deal hands over a much-needed hospital in Brooklyn's fastest growing area to a politically-connected real estate developer.

More here.


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Thursday, July 23, 2015

Park Slope: Pavilion Theater Project Hearing Tonight (Thurs., July 23)

Photo: Park Slope Civic Council
 The Park Slope Civic Council urges Park Slope residents to attend important public hearings on the Pavilion Theater project. The first hearing is before the Community Board 6 Landmarks Committee on Thursday, July 23rd at 6:00PM, which will be held at the 78th Precinct at 65 Sixth Avenue (between Dean and Bergen Streets).

The committee will make a recommendation to the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), which will receive public testimony on this project at a second public hearing on August 4th at 9:30 am at the Manhattan Municipal Building, 1 Centre Street, 9th Floor. The community's testimony at these public hearings will be a factor in the final design of the project.

The Pavilion Theater will be converted into 24 condos, a subterranean 16-car garage, and 4 movie screens. Tenants and cars will enter on the 14th Street side of the theater. The project will incorporate a new 5-story building replacing the existing one-story restaurant facing Bartel Pritchard Square.

In including these properties in the extension of the Park Slope Historic District, the LPC called the west side of Bartel Pritchard Square a formal portal into the neighborhood. The project will be a significant addition to the square, which makes it important for the community's voice to be heard at these two hearings.


Hearing Dates, Times, Locations:

CB6 LANDMARKS / LAND USE COMMITTEE
DATE: Thursday, July 23rd
TIME: 6:00 PM
LOCATION: 78th Precinct
65 Sixth Avenue
(between Dean and Bergen Streets)
Brooklyn, NY 11215

LANDMARKS PRESERVATION COMMISSION
DATE: Tuesday, August 4th
TIME: 9:30 AM
LOCATION: Manhattan Municipal Building
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Check the CB6 website (www.brooklyncb6.org/calendar) to confirm that there is not a change in location.



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VIDEO: How to Destroy Your Cell Phone With Sen. Lindsey Graham


In case you missed it: After the Donald gave out his phone number, Senator and GOP presidential candidate Lindsey Graham -- who defended Sen. John McCain after Trump slandered him -- demonstrated many creative ways to dispose of his cell phone.

Sen. McCain tweeteed:

This is why @LindseyGrahamSC hasn't been answering my calls!


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Have You Seen Cornelio Pascual, Missing from East New York, Brooklyn?

NYPD issued a Silver Alert on Wednesday at 4:15 PM for the disappearance of Cornelio Pascual, a 73-year-old Hispanic male with Alzheimer's from the area of Schenck Avenue and Stanley Avenue in the East New York section of Brooklyn.

He was last seen on Tuesday at approximately 3:45 PM wearing blue jeans, a striped polo shirt, black sneakers and a black Kangol hat. He is described as 5'6" tall and 150 lbs, with dark hair and dark eyes.

If you see him, please call 9-1-1.



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Wednesday, July 22, 2015

b.good Restaurant Coming to Brooklyn Heights; More Maritime Projects to Brooklyn; and More

- For Brooklyn basketball courts, funding isn't a slam dunk. [WSJ]

- No free snacks: NY1 looks at Hillary's campaign HQ in Brooklyn, and we're starting to feel sorry for the workers there.  [NY1]

- A restaurant with the “human touch” – b.good, based out of Boston – will be replacing the now-closed Grand Canyon restaurant at 141 Montague St. in Brooklyn Heights. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Marijuana grower looking to open dispensary in Brooklyn caught using potentially dangerous levels of pesticide. [Daily News]

- Attorney General Eric Schneiderman has filed to shutter a Brooklyn charity, National Children’s Leukemia Foundation, which lied about its programs and sending dying kids to Disney World. [AG NY]

- The Village Voice's Brooklyn Pour festival will be serving unlimited tastings of more than 100 brews. [Village Voice]

- More Brooklyn maritime projects are in the pipeline. [Brooklyn Eagle]


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Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Thousands in Brooklyn and Staten Island Lose Power Monday Night

Con Ed's Mobile Command Post. Photo by Con Ed
 It was a hot and sticky night for more than 9,000 Con Edison customers in Brooklyn and Staten Island Monday night into Tuesday.

Staten Island was hardest hit, with approximately 19,000 customer outages in the Fresh Kills and Fox Hills neighborhoods losing power. 

By 1:30 a.m. Tuesday, the situation had improved on Staten Island, to just over 3,000 customers without power. For roughly 2,600 of them, Con Ed says the power will be restored by 5 a.m. Tuesday morning. The power prognosis for hundreds of other Staten Island customers is "pending."

Roughly 1,000 Con Ed customers were without power Brooklyn as of 1:30 a.m.. Con Ed says the power won't be back on in Brooklyn until 7 p.m. Tuesday.

Con Ed has asked affected neighborhoods to conserve energy while company crews work to repair equipment problems.  Con Edison has also reduced voltage in those areas as a precaution.

Early Tuesday morning, about 100 customers in Manhattan and the same number in the Bronx were without power.

Con Ed issued an alert at 9 p.m. Monday night. It said:

Due to the extremely hot temperatures, Con Edison wants to remind all customers citywide to conserve energy. Con Edison is asking customers to limit use of washers, dryers, air conditioners, and other energy-intensive equipment, and to turn off lights and televisions when not needed.

Customers can report outages and check service restoration status at www.conEd.com or by calling 1-800-75-CONED (1-800-752-6633).


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Monday, July 20, 2015

Sympathy for Teen Who Killed Father; Poly Prep Trouble; and More Brooklyn Briefs


- In Kensington, there is great sympathy for the 19-year-old son now charged with stabbing his father to death. [PIX11]

- A man fell off the roof of a Crown Heights townhouse while filming a rap music video. [Gothamist]

- Poly Prep accused of sending a goon to intimidate is a lawsuit. [Brooklyn Paper]

- Dramatic spike in hospital visits prompts Cuomo to push for tougher synthetic pot regulations. [Brooklyn Eagle]

A Brooklyn church is about to vanish. [WSJ]

- Don't want to park your own car? Zirx is offering valet parking service in DUMBO, Brooklyn Heights, Vinegar Hill and Downtown. [Technical.ly]




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Park Slope Condos: Pavilion Theater Project Hearing on Thursday, July 23

Courtesy: Park Slope Civic Council
The Park Slope Civic Council urges Park Slope residents to attend important public hearings on the Pavilion Theater project.

The Pavilion Theater will be converted into 24 condos, a subterranean 16-car garage, and 4 movie screens. Tenants and cars will enter on the 14th Street side of the theater. The project will incorporate a new 5-story building replacing the existing one-story restaurant facing Bartel Pritchard Square.

The first hearing is before the Community Board 6 Landmarks Committee on Thursday, July 23rd at 6:00PM, which will be held at the 78th Precinct at 65 Sixth Avenue (between Dean and Bergen Streets).

The committee will make a recommendation to the Landmarks Preservation Commission (LPC), which will receive public testimony on this project at a second public hearing on August 4th at 9:30 am at the Manhattan Municipal Building, 1 Centre Street, 9th Floor. The community's testimony at these public hearings will be a factor in the final design of the project.

In including these properties in the extension of the Park Slope Historic District, the LPC called the west side of Bartel Pritchard Square a formal portal into the neighborhood. The project will be a significant addition to the square, which makes it important for the community's voice to be heard at these two hearings.


Hearing Dates, Times, Locations:
DATE: Thursday, July 23rd
TIME: 6:00 PM
LOCATION: 78th Precinct
65 Sixth Avenue
(between Dean and Bergen Streets)
Brooklyn, NY 11215

DATE: Tuesday, August 4th
TIME: 9:30 AM
LOCATION: Manhattan Municipal Building
1 Centre Street, 9th Floor
New York, NY 10007

Check the CB6 website (www.brooklyncb6.org/calendar) to confirm that there is not a change in location.


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Carmen Morales, 67, Missing in Brooklyn

The NYPD issued a Silver Alert late Sunday night for the disappearance of Carmen Morales, a 67-year-old Hispanic woman with dementia and Alzheimer's from the East New York section of Brooklyn.

She was last seen on 7/15 at approximately 11:00 PM in the area of Atlantic Avenue and Linwood Street.

Ms. Morales is described at 5'3", 125 lbs., with black hair and brown eyes. She was last seen wearing blue jeans, a blue shirt, and brown sandals. If seen, call 9-1-1.


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Friday, July 17, 2015

Brooklyn's CB2 Approves Controversial Brooklyn Heights Library Proposal

Photo: MK Metz
At a packed and frequently interrupted meeting Wednesday night, Brooklyn's Community Board 2 approved, with provisions, a much-disputed plan to sell and redevelop the site of the Brooklyn Heights Library.

In the plan, Hudson Companies Inc. would build a soaring residential tower, replace the current library with a smaller one, and construct 114 affordable-housing units in Clinton Hill.

The added provisions would create a reserve fund of at least $2 million for future capital repairs; require the same "usable" floor space as the existing branch (much confusion over what is exactly usable, however); and create a  Community Benefits Agreement and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU).

As the Brooklyn Eagle explains, emotions ran high and members of the audience were warned several times to quiet down or be ejected.

The proposal next moves to the Borough President’s Office, and then the City Planning Commission.

More details here.


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Thursday, July 16, 2015

Flooding Swamps Gowanus; Is Smith Street Over? And More Brooklyn Briefs

A video posted by Andres Guardia (@andres_guardia) on

- Flash flooding swamped parts of Brooklyn on Wednesday. The above is a video posted to Instagram by Andres Guardia showing flooding near the Gowanus Canal.

- Farewell, Smith Street: After many of its big names close up shop, the Observer says Smith Street's restaurant row is "a shadow of its former self."

- Man sitting in a BMW with his girlfriend is shot to death in Flatbush. [NY Post]

- Several people were injured when a four-story building on Fulton Street in Bedford-Stuyvesant collapsed on Tuesday. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Prevaricators, beware: The Truth Booth is coming to Brooklyn. [Observer]

- Apparently it’s not enough for Greenpoint to lose 5 beautiful London Plane trees. The Parks Department and City Council seem to be "OK with the losing out on $414,000 restitution" because "soon enough Greenpoint will be blanketed in trees," says Greenpointers.


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Fundraiser for Brooklyn Heights Baby Who Died in Day Care Raises $50K in One Day

The GoFundMe campaign for the Brooklyn Heights parents of a 3-month-old baby boy who died in a SoHo day care raised $50,000 its first day.

More than 650 kind hearts have donated amounts ranging from $5 to $2,000 to Lee Towndrow and Amber Scorah, the parents of little Karl, who died during his first morning at the day care center.

Wrenchingly, one message, along with $5, was left by the parents of another family whose child also died in a day care: Donor Denise McCoy wrote, "I'm sorry I can't give any more than this.....although I would love too. We just lost our 4 month old at an unlicensed daycare as well just 2 weeks ago :( "

More on Karl's tragic death here.

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Wednesday, July 15, 2015

82-Yr-Old Raped; Bed-Stuy Building Collapse; Squibb Bridge Disappointment; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- The top three floors of a four-story building in Bedford-Stuyvesant collapsed Tuesday afternoon, injuring three people, including a passerby riding a bicycle. [NBC]

- Outrage: An 18-year-old sexual predator raped and sodomized an 82-year-old woman in Brighton Beach. [NY Daily News]

- Patience fades as Squibb Park Bridge in Brooklyn Heights remains shut. [NY Times]

- NY State Senator Martin Golden told a funny joke, and some people are upset about it. [NY Minute]

- Complaint was filed against unlicensed SoHo day care center months before Brooklyn Heights baby died there, but it wasn’t followed-up. [Daily News]

- Did a Brooklyn costume shop create Spider-Man 8 years before Marvel? [NY Post]

- Donald Trump frets about a tweet from someone calling himself El Chapo, which says, "I'm gonna make you swallow your [expletive] words..." [7online] 

- But maybe Trump should worry more about Israel, after his recent tweet featuring Nazis. [The Hill]

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CB2 to Vote on Sale of Brooklyn Heights Library Tonight (Wed., July 15)

Rendering courtesy of Marvel Architects
 Tonight (Wednesday, July 15th) at 6:00 p.m. Brooklyn’s Community Board 2 will vote on the proposed sale and development of the Brooklyn Heights Library on Cadman Plaza West at the corner of Tillary and Clinton Streets.

The CB2 meeting takes place at St. Francis College, Founders Hall, 180 Remsen Street (Court and Clinton streets)in Brooklyn Heights.

Brooklyn Public Library says it needs to sell the library site because it needs millions in repairs, and in order to support at least four other crumbling libraries in Brooklyn. Local opposition to the sale has been vociferous, however. A group called Citizens Defending Libraries has taken the lead, saying, "If the board votes “YES” to approve the proposal it will set the table for future developers to feast on public assets."

More details about the vote and CB2's 3 caveats here.

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Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Vigil for Vision Zero Tonight (Tuesday) in NYC, Day After Tragic Barclays Crash

Map data c 2015 Google
 Families for Safe Streets, an organization made up of relatives of people killed in traffic violence, is hosting a Vigil for Vision Zero tonight (Tuesday, July 14), 7 p.m. at Union Square Park North.

The vigil comes one day after a tragic crash on Flatbush, Fourth and Atlantic Avenues in Brooklyn, which killed a cyclist and injured six others, according to the Brooklyn Eagle.

The crash was caused by a a 37-year-old man who lost control of his SUV, leaving a blocks-long swath of death and destruction.

Brooklyn is the deadliest borough for pedestrians with 130 traffic deaths over three years, according to an analysis from the Tri-State Transportation Campaign.

More at:
Cyclist dies, six injured in grisly crash near Barclays Center in Brooklyn [Brooklyn Eagle]


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Monday, July 13, 2015

Pier 6 Meeting at CB2; Teens Shot Near Brooklyn Museum, and More Brooklyn Briefs


- A CB2 committee to consider Pier 6 towers Monday (tonight) at Polytechnic. [BHB]

- Two teenagers were shot during a West Indian music festival in Mount Prospect Park in Brooklyn on Sunday night, near the Brooklyn Museum. [NYT]

- Former Congressman Anthony Weiner revealed he’ll be both a supporting actor and main course in the upcoming sci-fi farce “Sharknado 3: Oh Hell No!” [NY Post]

- NY Times found some young Brooklyn families who left for the burbs . . . THEN RETURNED! [Gothamist]

- When the chips are down, Squadron gets the bark to the park. Brooklyn dogs give appl-paws . . . [Brooklyn Eagle]

- NY Magazine features the 30 best new cheapest places to eat in New York. About a third of them are in Brooklyn. [Grub Street

- Donald Trump has something to say about the Mexican drug lord’s escape, of course. [Politico]

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Friday, July 10, 2015

Brooklyn DA Thompson Called 'Rude' to the Ladies; Another Trader Joe's; and More Brooklyn Briefs

- Report: Brooklyn DA Ken Thompson is so rude to his female staffers that they’re leaving his office in droves. [NY Post]

- Brooklyn judge rules that 7 very old seniors at Prospect Park Residence can have their day in court. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- Williamsburg to get Brooklyn's second Trader Joe's. [Patch]

- The Brooklyn Bridge deserves  a scenic view district of its own. [Curbed]

- Williamsburg is so trendy Brooklyn Brewery is scouting cheaper neighborhoods. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- 13 people have been arrested in a drug sweep and charged with allegedly selling narcotics near schools in Brooklyn. [Daily Star]

- Brooklyn Law School has put a Promenade-fronting property that it's housed students and faculty in for the last 30 years on the market. [Curbed]


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Thursday, July 9, 2015

Get Your Act Together for the Coney Island Talent Show!


Here's your magical ticket to the big time: The 6th Annual Coney Island Talent Show takes place Saturday, July 25th,from 4-8pm on the Boardwalk (between 10th & 12th street).

Organizers (The Alliance for Coney Island, Deno’s Wonder Wheel & Thirsty Girl Productions) call the splendorous event: "A spectacle of sunshine and lollipops on the boardwalk."

Join Hostess The World Famous *BOB* and the fanfare of legendary talent that has come out of Coney Island -- and be a part of it.

You KNOW what you can do!

Details:

Categories for this year’s talent contest are: Creative kids 9-12 years old, Creative kids 13-17 years old and Song, Dance & Variety 18 and up

1st prize in each category will receive a cash prize of $250, and day passes to participating Coney Island Amusements

2nd prize in each category will receive a cash prize of $100, and day passes to participating Coney Island Amusements.

3rd prize in each category will a cash prize of $50, and tickets to participating Coney Island Amusements.

The Best Dressed person in each category will receive a special mystery prize.

Celebrity Judges include: The Mayor of Coney Island, Dick Zigun, comedian Bob Greenberg and singer and comedian Amber Martin

To apply to perform in The Coney Island Talent show, visit www.coneyislandtalentshow.com and fill out an application by July 15th.

Bella. Images courtesy of Coney Island Talent Show

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Brooklyn Officials, Gay Pride Groups to Hold #LoveWins Anti-Violence Rally Thurs.

Following an anti-gay hate crime in Crown Heights, NYS Senator Jesse Hamilton, Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams, LAMBDA Independent Democrats of Brooklyn (LID)and numerous gay pride groups will be standing together on Thursday at 1 p.m. at Utica Avenue and Carroll Street.

Sen. Hamilton and Michael Czaczkes of LID write:

On June 30th, someone just going about their business on a beautiful summer evening faced a horrific anti-gay attack. A hate crime. We are gathering at the place of the incident to say: Not in our neighborhood. Not in our City. Not in our State. We refuse to let the hateful acts of those attackers prevail. We refuse to turn our backs on the safety and security of our LGBTQ family, friends, and neighbors.

Other participants include:
Chutney Pride
Caribbean American Pride (Brooklyn)
Community leaders
Gay Men of African Descent (GMAD)
The LGBT Bar Association of Greater New York
Empire State Pride Agenda
Jim Owles Liberal Democratic Club
Prospect Heights Democrats for Reform
Make the Road
Brooklyn Community Pride Center

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Free Seminar: How To Apply for Affordable Housing in NYC (July 12)

A free seminar being held on Sunday, July 12 in Brooklyn on how to apply for affordable housing in New York City.

The Co-Cathedral of St Joseph's -- Rector Monsignor Kieran Harrington -- is a partner in hosting this seminar.

According to tthe press release from Berlin Rosen, the seminar is especially important as new city-subsidized affordable buildings are being developed in the borough and are being made available through NYC HPD's lottery system. The seminar will include information on how to correctly fill out and submit housing lottery applications.

The event will take place at the Co-Cathedral of St. Joseph, located at 856 Pacific Street (Prospect Heights) in the basement, and will start promptly at 1:00 PM.

MHANY owns and manages approximately 1,500 affordable residential apartments within NYC.


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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

Former Site of Brooklyn Heights' 'White Voodoo Princess' to Be Razed, Redeveloped

Courtesy Google Maps
Jonathan Rose Cos. is planning to develop a 19-story residential property at 146 Pierrepont Street in Brooklyn Heights, the Real Deal reports.

This cute little wedge of a building was once home to residential tenants and art studios. One studio was occupied by Brooklyn's famous "White Voodoo Princess," Caro Heller. According to the Brooklyn Eagle:

"Her former studio at 146 Pierrepont Street was filled with skeletons, taxidermy and voodoo altars, which sometimes triggered a state of possession in Haitian visitors. 'They started talking in tongues, talking as gods,' [her son] Peter said.

Random people would drop off body parts from time to time.

“A window washer dropped off a skull,” Peter recalled.

Mourning for the old days already . . .

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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Brooklyn Heights Library Sale Lurches Along ULURP Process with CB2 Committee Approval

Courtesy of Marvel Architects
Community Board 2’s Land Use Committee voted 8 to 4 Monday night to approve the controversial $52 million sale and development of the Brooklyn Heights Library. But they added three caveats, according to a story in the Brooklyn Eagle:

1: A special account of at least $2 million set aside only for the capital needs of the Brooklyn Heights branch, to avoid the deterioration that occurred in the current building.

2: That the new branch library should have the same amount of square footage as the current branch. There was some fuzziness over exactly what this includes, however.

3: A request for a Community Benefits Agreement and a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU). These are intended, at minimum, to ensure the developer, the Hudson Companies, keeps its promises that affordable housing be built before breaking ground on the tower, and an interim library be established during the multi-year construction of the 36-story project.

As can be expected, members of the public were not happy with the approval. But another hearing is coming up soon at Borough Hall.

More here:

CB2 committee approves sale of Brooklyn Heights Library, with caveats [Brooklyn Eagle]


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Get Ready for Brooklyn's 2015 Bastille Day Celebration

 Bastille Day will be celebrated in Brooklyn on Sunday, July 12 on Smith Street in its usual fabulous manner.

Photo: MK Metz
French folk and those who love them will crowd Smith Street to drink Pastis, watch the petanque tournament, stick their heads in the guillotine, eat French food and party at Bar Tabac, a major sponsor.

The north end of the street will be closed off and covered in sand for the annual petanque tournament, near Bar Tabac (128 Smith St. at Dean Street).

John Quadrozzi has been donating and spreading the sand with his cement trucks for the past 11 years to create the petanque courts. The food and drink come from Smith Street restaurants and shops. Competitors in the petanque tournament come from all over the world.

Petanque, pronounced "pay-tonk", is related to the Italian bowling game called 'bocce'.Only it's French.

In petanque, competitors throw metal balls (boules), trying to get close to a little ball called a "pig" (cochonnet).

The Brooklyn event is the biggest Bastille celebration in the U.S.  The event was founded by Bette Stoltz along with restaurants Bar Tabac and Robin des Bois (now shuttered), and is sponsored by French apĂ©ritif company Ricard.

The actual holiday, which commemorates the storming of the Bastill in 1789, taks place on July 14 but in Brooklyn, it always takes place on Sunday.

Previous posts on this topic:

- The French Storm Brooklyn's Smith Street for Bastille Day 2014
- Bastille Day in Brooklyn this Sunday: Petanque AND the Final World Cup Game 2014
- The French Get Their Party On in Brooklyn for Bastille Day 2013
- Good Times at Brooklyn's Bastille Day 2012
- 2012 Bastille Day Coming Up
- Bastille Day 2011
- 2011 Bastille Day Coming Up
- Brooklyn's Bastille Day, 2010
- Brooklyn's 2010 Bastille Day Celebration Looking Big 
- Brooklyn Bastille Day 2009 -- Great Day, Big Crowds
- Bastille Day 2009 in Brooklyn  
- Bastille Day in Brooklyn: The French Conquer Smith Street (2008)
- Brooklyn's Bastille Day: Smith Street, Sunday (coming up 2008)
- Bastille Day in Brooklyn -- La Rue de Smith Sautait! (2007)

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Why Brooklyn's Pacific Park Won't Actually Be a Park

Pacific Park, Brooklyn
Atlantic Yards Report had created an excellent in-depth analysis of why ballyhooed Pacific Park, the privately managed open space being planned for Atlantic Yards' Pacific Heights 14-tower mega-development, won't actually be a "park," despite the rhetoric of developer Greenland Forest City Partners.

The whole article is worth reading through, but here are a few points:

* The promised central promenade won't appear for years, and the open space won't be done until 2025

* Strip away the buildings, and the space resembles a spine with some squiggly vertebrae

* The green will abut construction sites for the next decade

* The "main lawn" is tiny, little more than one-third an acre

* The amount of open space is well below the city average for the population around it.

* The street trees pictured do not resemble the actual plan. Many won't actually be there at all.

Read more at:
"Just like a normal accessible park"? Misleading rhetoric and incomplete information behind the (inadequate) Atlantic Yards/Pacific Park open space [Atlantic Yards Report]


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Monday, July 6, 2015

CB2 to Consider Brooklyn Heights Library Sale Again Tonight

Rendering courtesy of Marvel Architects
 Tonight, Community Board 2's Land Use Committee will again consider the controversial proposed sale of the Brooklyn Heights Library branch to a developer who plans to demolish the library and replace it with a 36-story (441-foot-tall), 139-unit luxury residential tower, with a new library occupying the ground floor and some space below the ground.

The meeting takes place at 6:30 p.m. in the Founders’ Hall of St. Francis College, 180 Remsen Street (Court and Clinton streets).

At its previous epic four-and-a-half hour hearing in June, the Committee failed to reach an affirmative vote.

Tonight's meeting is NOT a hearing, and it is likely that no time will be available for public comment. 

Environmental Assessment Statement


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Sunday, July 5, 2015

Heavy Police, Big Crowds in Brooklyn for NYC's 2015 Fourth of July Fireworks

Hundreds of police and terrorism officers took over the streets of Brooklyn Heights Saturday afternoon in preparation for the Macy's July 4th fireworks display.

Cordons and metal fencing were set up on the Promenade, and several streets between Brooklyn Heights and DUMBO were blocked to both cars and pedestrians.

Aviation units patrolled the skies, and the NYPD Harbor Unit guarded the waterway.

All afternoon, the crowd grew on the Promenade -- especially after the drizzle stopped. Police checked bags and backpacks before letting anyone in.

Someone hand-lettered this patriotic sign and propped it up on the Promenade flagpole.

An incredible crowd strolled down Old Fulton Street towards Fulton Ferry Landing, Brooklyn Bridge Park and DUMBO, hoping to land a spot by the water to see the fireworks.

We watched the display from atop a tower in Brooklyn Heights. Brilliant show!

We could hear applause and whoops from balconies and hi-rises across the Heights as the fireworks wound up.

All in all a great day. But the line to get back on the 2 and 3 and A trains ---- Unbelievable!

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Thursday, July 2, 2015

#1 Hotel in Brooklyn Coming to Dumbo Heights? Heights Cinema Plan OK'd; and More Brooklyn Briefs

Dumbo Heights
 - Ian Schrager is working on a new Public hotel at J. Kushner's Dumbo Heights office and retail project. “We ... intend for it to be the No. 1 hotel in Brooklyn,” said Schrager. [NY Post]

- New York City’s Landmark Preservation Commission gave JMH Development and Madison Estates the thumbs-up for their plans at the former site of the Brooklyn Heights Cinema. [CP Executive]

- More cops may be headed to Brooklyn’s 84th Precinct, and Brooklyn Bridge Park is part of the reason why. [Brooklyn Eagle]

- A group burned an American flag during a protest in Fort Greene Park Wednesday night, but scattered when opponents stepped in. [CBS local]

- Possible fetus (!) found in Dunkin’ Donuts coffee cup left in Brooklyn public housing development’s stairwell. [Daily News]

- The NYPD will enhance counterterrorism efforts on Fourth of July this year in response to an increase in worldwide threats. [SI Live]

- $5.3 million will be spent to put high-speed broadband into the Southwest Brooklyn, Long Island City, North Brooklyn and Greenpoint-Williamsburg Industrial Business Zones. [Observer]

- Manhole fires along Bergen Street snagged multiple subway lines from downtown Brooklyn to Park Slope Wednesday afternoon. [CBS local]

- Suspects who stole over 50 phones, tablets from Park Slope AT&T store were caught on camera. [Daily News]

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