The Hook-Up

Off the Grid, On the Bridge and Out of the Chamber — The Hook-up (5/18)

Williamsburg Bridge (photo: Julia Moak)

Happy Friday, Greenpoint! For some of our neighbors, this has been a tough week. On Sunday, 500 Greenpoint residents lost their heat and hot water when National Grid cut service due to a water-damaged gas line.

But, Greenpoint isn’t entirely without modern conveniences, and a kickstarter campaign launched on Thursday wants to up the ante. The project calls for a floating pedestrian bridge connecting Greenpoint and Long Island City. 

Speaking of Bridges, it became clear at Wednesday’s L-pocalypse Town Hall in Williamsburg that the Williamsburg Bridge can only handle 3 extra trains per hour over the current schedule, certainly not enough to meet the demands of ousted L riders.  Continue reading

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NYU is in the Pencil Factory, The BQX isn’t in the Budget, and NYC blames Airbnb for Rising Rent — the Hook-up (5/11)

BQXRendering_Greenpointers_Cadkin
Not Today, BQX

Happy Friday, Greenpoint! Say hello to our newest neighbor: NYU School of Medicine. NYU has signed a 15-year lease for nearly 17,000sqft of space at 74 Kent Street, and will open a physical therapy and imaging center.

While we will be getting NYU, we won’t be getting BQX. Mayor de Blasio did not include the project in his budget for the next fiscal year, and the city’s Economic Development Corporation also declined allocate funds for the Gentrification Express.

Speaking of big budget items, the former Greenpoint Mechanics and Traders Bank at 144 Franklin Street is on the market for $6.5 Million.

If that sounds steep, the city hopes you’ll blame Airbnb. A study from the city Comptroller finds that airbnb listings have driven rents in Greenpoint up about $100/month. The Comptroller also blames the company for rent increases and homelessness across the city, a very steep charge to level against New Yorkers who share their homes on the platform because rent is so high in the first place.  Continue reading

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You Can Go to Hawaii Or Palm Springs Will Come To You — The Hook-up (5/4)

The Springs
Gettin Tropical at The Springs via The Springs

Welcome to Friday, Greenpoint! Now that the sun is out, the news is full of all things Paradise.

First up, what’s better than Summer Fridays? An all-expenses paid trip to Hawaii. The Hawaii Tourism Board is now accepting applications for a week-long remote work-residency program exclusively for New Yorkers. 

If you can’t make it out to Hawaii, have no fear, there’s a new piece of paradise right here in Greenpoint. On Thursday, The Springs opened at 224 Franklin Street sporting Southern California vibes!  Continue reading

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One Word: Plastics — The Hook-up (4/27)

Get Benjamin Braddock on the phone: the lead story in today’s hook-up is all about plastics.

The former NuHart Plastics site has been snapped up by a developer. In a 55 million dollar deal, All Year Management has purchased the 335,000 sqft lot that includes 22-36 Clay St., 280 Franklin St. and 49-93 Dupont St. The site, home to an ill-begotten halloween rave in 2015, is so contaminated that it’s considered a superfund site, but All Year Management still plans to build a residential complex with at least two buildings.  Continue reading

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Punch and Pepper-Spray, Hardware and High School — The Hook-up (4/20)

Good morning, Greenpoint! It’s Friday, and time for the Hook-up. Sometimes, I think we should just rename this column “Another Week, the Same MTA,” since it seems that most of the things that get a line here are subway-related. That’s true as ever this week. Punch, Pepper-Spray, Hardware and High School are all, in their myriad and sundry ways, subway stories. So, step in, stand clear of the closing doors.  Continue reading

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Dogs, Dreams, Data and Design — The Hook-up (4/13)

Greenpoint is on Track this week
Greenpoint is on Track this week! via wired

It’s gorgeous out, Greenpoint! And that’s not the only reason to celebrate. This week started out with some sweet news. On Monday, an MTA subway track inspector rescued that had wandered into the L tunnel. The hero, Edlin Cruz, caught up with the dog at Graham Avenue.

In other L-train news, Wired took a look at “The Dreamers of the L-Train Shutdown,” noting how the impending L-pocalypse has really spurred some quixotic creativity in New York, inspiring such proposals as gondolas, pontoon bridges, and inflatable bridges.

Meanwhile, the Village Voice asked, “Is the Rest of the Subway Ready for the L-Train Shutdown?” focusing on the impact that service changes will have on our beloved G train. For example, “No station illustrates the scale of the challenge, or raises questions about whether the MTA is doing enough to mitigate the impact of its own planned work, better than Court Square in Long Island City, where internal MTA documents warn that corridors could be “crush-loaded” once erstwhile L riders crowd onto the G.” Get ready for the crush, Greenpoint.  Continue reading

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Getting Medieval, Getting Dirty and Getting out of Town — The Hook-up (4/6)

Cafe Grumpy in Miami
Still Grumpy, even under the palms.

Happy Friday, Greenpoint! This week, the New Yorker encouraged us all to get Medieval, praising Krolewskie Jadlo (694 Manhattan Avenue), “the sole medievalist eatery in the five boroughs” for its “seriousness of culinary intent.”

Speaking of local history, The Queens Gazette offered us “The Dirty Yet Important History of Newtown Creek.”

But polluted water isn’t just a thing of the past, it’s a true concern of the present. So pressing is the question of water safety, that Curbed asked, “How worried should New Yorkers be about sewage ending up in city waterways?” Their ultimate findings: “there’s virtually no way combined-sewer overflow could affect the city’s drinking water supply.” But swimming, can be another story…

But, if you’d trade in New York’s water woes for the sparkling beaches of Miami, it looks like your not the only one. Greenpoint’s Cafe Grumpy now has a Miami outpost.

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The L train is Clobbering Rents and Riders are Clobbering Each Other — The Hook-up (3/30)

kent street greenpoint brooklyn
We know Greenpoint is Gorgeous. Could rents be dropping thanks to L-pocalpse?

Welcome to the Hook-up. We all know the MTA is a diva. But this time it’s not (all) about the L-pocalypse. In fact, this week, MTA honcho Andy Byford was crowing about a different set of repairs. His goal is to update the subway’s pre-war signal system, and he suggests he can get it done in 10-15 years! To put that in perspective, other estimates peg the time frame at 40 years. How will he do it? Suspending a lot of weekend service.

But anyway, back to L-pocalypse. If there’s any silver lining within the impending doom that is the L-train shutdown, it might be that rents have already begun to fall in North Brooklyn ahead of the closure. 

Presumably, those still renting in North BK will be sanguine about the shutdown, and go about their lives as best they can. But not everyone was so serene on the subway this week. In fact, a 25 year-old man punched a 5-year-old in the face on the G train on Monday, and checked himself into Jacobi Medical Center. Police cannot question or arrest him until he is released.  Continue reading

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Plans, Permits and Packages — The Hook-up (3/23)

A System Wide Meltdown Hit the G train hard! Via The Village Voice

The pace of change is swift here in the city, what with permits for new developments constantly being filed (like these for 85 and 87 Calyer Street), but this week, area residents are remembering the bygone gems of the early aughts, like Monkeytown, the performing arts paradise which began in a loft space at 222 Leonard street in 2003. (For those looking to relive the glory, Monkeytown may make an appearance in Mexico City later this year.)

Speaking of entertainment paradises — Newtown Creek! Really. The Newtown Creek Alliance’s long-term plan involves 85 projects along the waterway “that tie industry and recreation—without one compromising the other.”  Continue reading

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An Art Heist, An Environmental Vision and Another Hit and Run — The Hook-Up (3/16)

One of the paintings stolen from the Crozier Fine Arts Warehouse in Williamsburg
One of the paintings stolen from the Crozier Fine Arts Warehouse in Williamsburg via Brooklyn Paper

Happy Friday, Greenpoint, and welcome to the Da Vinci Code. There’s been an art heist on Bayard Street, and the NYPD has made an appeal for information from the public. The thief broke into the Crozier Fine Arts Warehouse in Williamsburg, and made off 6 Hudson River School landscape paintings worth a combined 1.7 million dollars.

Speaking of the River, this week, local community advocacy groups Riverkeeper,  Newtown Creek Alliance, Guardians of Flushing Bay and Perkins+Will teamed up to launch their Vision Plan for Newtown Creek and Flushing Waterways.

Newtown Creek Alliance is also part of a coalition of nearly 200 environmental groups that staged a rally this week to pressure Gov. Cuomo to ban single-use plastic shopping bags in New York State.  Continue reading

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