This week brought the news of another longtime local establishment calling it quits. Jerry’s Italian Market (620 Lorimer St.) is now closed after 40 years in East Williamsburg, one of over 60 business closings occurring in Greenpoint and Williamsburg since winter when the coronavirus pandemic swept the city and globe.
Pole dancing and aerial-movement arts studio IncrediPole also announced the closure of their 145 Java St. studio this week, citing the economic fallout of having to pay rent without utilizing their space: “This was a sad decision but ultimately not a difficult one,” the closing announcement states.
If 2020 has a theme so far, it might be change, and at a breakneck pace. The significance of NY’s democratic primary elections this year in which a slate of progressive upstart candidates declared victory was underscored by the race in the 50th assembly district.
Assemblyman Joe Lentol, whose tenure as a local elected official stretches back to the 1970s, faced a challenge from Greenpoint activist Emily Gallagher, whose winning grassroots campaign was executed on a shoestring budget.
Was Lentol a victim of his own success with the changing demographic of his constituency? During a video interview at Lentol Garden with NY1 this week, the outgoing 47-year Assemblyman whose term ends in January spoke on his legacy of fighting for environmental justice while helping to secure green space in Greenpoint and Williamsburg:
“Because I improved this neighborhood, I believe that a lot of people moved in because of it. If they would of had a devastation on the waterfront instead of an evolution of housing and development all around, younger people wouldn’t have moved into this neighborhood; because as it turns out, they were the ones who voted against me and put me out of office.”
When Gallagher takes office in 2021, it will be the first year that a Lentol will not be representing North Brooklyn in Albany since 1949.
In volunteer cleanup news this weekend, the North Brooklyn Open Space Stewards will host cleanups at Macri Triangle on Saturday at 11 a.m. and at McGolrick Park on Sunday at 10 a.m. A McCarren Park to Transmitter Park cleanup will also happen Saturday at 10 a.m. (meet at Lorimer Street and Bedford Avenue) hosted by Echoed Voices.
In case you need more motivation to continue social distancing, New Jersey is currently experiencing its largest virus transmission rate in three months. Keep your masks up Greenpointers, and in the meantime catch up on this week’s headlines from around the neighborhood:
- Burglaries and residential break-ins in Greenpoint are up this July compared to last year. (Greenpointers)
- Affordable housing lottery at Greenpoint Landing starts at $2,370 for a studio. (Greenpointers)
- Five North Brooklyn restaurants have been charged with COVID violations. (Greenpointers)
- McCarren Park’s tennis bubble will stay up all summer and is now bookable for free. (Greenpointers)
- Construction is wrapping up on Two Blue Slip the tallest structure to rise so far at Greenpoint Landing, as One Bell Slip begins its ascent. (NY YIMBY)
- North Brooklyn hotels are catering to locals this pandemic summer. (Greenpointers)
- A pop-up memorial at 50 Kent Ave. features victims of police brutality and wants you to “Say Their Names.” (Greenpointers)
- Revel temporarily ceases operations following a second fatal accident in two weeks. (Greenpointers)
- Longtime Rep. Carolyn Maloney has declared victory over Suraj Patel while BOE has not finalized the election results. (Astoria Post)
- A 27-year-old man was shot in the back on the grounds of the Williamsburg Houses. (NY Post)
- Construction is complete at Two Trees’ One South First, a mixed-use residential building near Domino Park. (NY YIMBY)
- Union Pool’s patio and taco truck have reopened. (Brooklyn Vegan)
- Look back at Kinfolk’s influence on NYC nightlife. (Highsnobiety)
- Pan-Caribbean restaurant Kokomo opens in Williamsburg. (NY Times)
- De Blasio: Cops dragging protesters into unmarked vans is “The Kind Of Thing We Don’t Want To See.” (Gothamist)
- A motorcyclist was fatality struck on Driggs Avenue by an NYPD SUV responding to a shooting. (NY Daily News)
- Two trucks collided in Williamsburg causing a large produce hauling truck to flip on its side. (amNY)
- Lawmakers aim to stop covid-19 apartment vacancies from upending rent regulation. (The CITY)