the hook-up

Newtown Creek Flows all the way to Utah — The Hook-up (2/8)

Newtown Creek: The Art of Toxic Tides via Slug Magazine

The mighty waters of Newtown Creek will be in fine form this weekend, as lovebirds and sewage nerds turn out for Saturday’s tours of The Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, but this week, they’ve taken the spotlight as far away as Utah.

While Utah might have the Great Salt Lake, but artist Kelly Larsen found his muse in Greenpoint, affixing a 9-foot canvas to the wall of the creek to record the ebb and flow of toxic tides.  Continue reading

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Brooklyn and A Queen — The Hook-up 1/26

Rev Yolanda Rocks the Pulpit at the Park Church Co-op
Rev Yolanda Rocks the Pulpit at the Park Church Co-op. Via Brooklyn Paper

This week, New Yorkers have been making their voices heard underground, underwater and in church.

On Sunday, Rev. Yolanda, a Drag Queen who leads an inter-faith congregation in Bay Ridge, brought Drag Queen Story Hour to the Park Church Co-op (129 Russell Street) to help children master the art of kindness and encourage them to embrace diversity.   Continue reading

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Pinball Wizards and Streetcar Woes — The Hook-up (1/19)

The Pinball Wizards of Williamsburg
The Pinball Wizards of Williamsburg. Via Brooklyn Daily

In the contentious world of elite New York pinball, there can be only one champion. This year, it was a North Brooklyn contest: Greenpoint’s Paragons of Pinball duked it out in the final round against Williamsburg’s Terrorwrists at Sunshine Laundromat (860 Manhattan Avenue). The Terrorwrists took the title.

Pinball is a fast-paced, high stakes enterprise. New York’s urban planning and infrastructural changes are much slower beasts. And so: the Brooklyn-Queens Connector (BQX), also known as the gentrification express. This is The Streetcar Not Everyone Desires. With more and more funding necessary, but less and less actual money secured for the project, the BQX is stalled behind schedule, and seems, for now, to be more of a pipe-dream than a real possibility.

Speaking of transportation going off the rails, an unoccupied car was found partially submerged in Newtown Creek this morning. As of yet, there is no information on the condition, whereabouts or identity of the driver.

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Opening and Closing — The Hookup (1/5)

First Rendering of the forthcoming tower at 18 India Street
First Rendering of the forthcoming tower at 18 India Street

As we brave a blizzard, and begin to close out the opening week of 2018, the news itself was full of openings and closings.

While we reported earlier this week on the uncertain future of Bar Matchless, which will stay open until it is forced to shut its doors, Baoburg (614 Manhattan Avenue) a celebrated Asian Fusion staple by McCarren Park, temporarily closed over the holiday, following a health inspection, then reopened with an A rating.

Pretty Southern, Sam Talbot’s fried chicken joint at 14 Bedford Avenue, closed on October 30th, with plans to reopen mid-November. They never made it. Eater reports that the building’s landlord confirmed Talbot is no longer renting the space.

From closing to opening: the ever-increasing flow of new real estate development in Greenpoint. YIMBY has the first renderings for a new 6 story Condo at 68 North Henry Street along the BQE.  Continue reading

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Pricey Condos, Pretty Parkland and How to Buy Your Apartment for $100 — The Hook-up 12/22

Mini new York at the holiday
A merry, mini, holiday at the Queens Museum via Artsy.net. Photo by Max Touhey

Happy Holidays, Greenpoint! Greenpoint’s festive lights, abundance of holiday markets, and glorious array of bakeries has us all set for merry making. While we have some great ideas for last minute gifts, the news this week points to one big ticket item: if all you want for Christmas is a condo… you’re in luck. Two more properties in the area have been acquired by development firms.

Mortar Arch + Dev is planning a 5-story 14,000 square-foot project at 167 Eagle Street that will include 14 condos.

Grand Street Development has updated its design for 848 Lorimer Street, a six story building with over 36,000 square feet and 52 apartments.

Meanwhile, the waterfront esplanade promised in front of The Greenpoint, a 40 story development still in progress, is beginning to take shape. Private developers are required to create public park land, and to cede that land to the city, as part of the 2005 rezoning agreement. The esplanade should be complete by the spring.

If all this redevelopment is getting you down, here’s something that might bring a little cheer: the Queens Museum has a stunningly accurate 1:1200 scale model of New York City. The model was first commissioned by Robert Moses for the 1964 World’s Fair, and has been updated over the years. In order to maintain the model, the Queens museum is “selling” the miniature properties. For $100, you can buy any apartment you like, and even get a deed in the mail.

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Art, Urban Equity and Brooklyn in Albany — The Hook-up 12/15

#BroCleanBKLYN via Instagram
#BroCleanBKLYN via Instagram

Last week, I had the privilege to see a remastered print of Ken Burns’ 1981 film, Brooklyn Bridge, at the Brooklyn Museum. The documentary had me feeling all the feelings for the Bridge and the borough. But it’s not just the Great Bridge that’s been inspiring Brooklyn this week. In fact, our very own Newtown Creek has been inspiring equitable urban greening and environmental activism here in the neighborhood, and around the country. For example, the Newtown Creek Nature Walk was cited as a project for the neighborhood that avoids environmental gentrification.

Further, brothers Gary and Sam Bencheghib took to the mighty waters of Newtown Creek in their series  #BroCleanBKLN. On December 2nd, the pair paddled both the Creek and Gowanus Canal to highlight pollution in Brooklyn, and advocate for cleaner waterways.  Continue reading

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Subway Rats Join the Brunch Craze, Firefox Gives out Free Coffee and the BQX Unveils a Prototype — the Hook-up (11/17)

Subway rats are on trend this week.
Subway rats are on trend this week.

Move over, Pizza Rat, there’s a new celebrity rodent in town. This week, a subway rat went full “Brooklyn” and jumped on the avocado craze. While waiting for the G at Greenpoint Avenue on Tuesday, filmmaker Jessica Edwards captured a video of a rat hauling a slice of avocado along the tracks.

That’s not the only food-based transit story in the news this week. Mozilla launched a Firefox browser update this week, and claims its internet service is now faster than Google Chrome. To celebrate, Firefox operated a free “Firefox Fast Ferry” between Greenpoint and Manhattan from Tuesday-Thursday. The rides included complimentary donuts, coffee and live music.

Speaking of riding in style, the first prototype of the Brooklyn-Queens Connector, or BQX, was unveiled on Monday. Also known as the Gentrification Express, the proposed streetcar would run along the waterfront from Astoria to Sunset Park.

The advocacy coalition “Friends of BQX” is pushing Mayor de Blasio to make the streetcar a priority during his second term, at the same time as glass high-rise developments begin to engulf Greenpoint’s waterfront.

But, there may be some environmental justice for Greenpoint courtesy of the Long Island Sound. Much of the Nitrogen that contributes to “dead zones” in the Long Island Sound comes from waste treatment plants in New York City. Pressure from advocacy groups like Save Our Sound could lead to technological upgrades at Newtown Creek.

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A Teen in the Turnstile, A Man in the River, and Sex at the Center — The Hook-up 9/29

Activist Swimmer Christopher Swain Takes on the East River. Via Brooklyn Paper
Activist Swimmer Christopher Swain Takes on the East River. Via Brooklyn Paper

We’ve all had trouble with the turnstile before — maybe your MetroCard isn’t swiping, maybe some of the turnstiles are out of order — but it takes a special skill and dedication to find yourself wedged on top of a full height turnstile at 8am on a Tuesday morning at Court Square, as one teenage turnstile jumper did this week. A witness told Gothamist that the teen “tried to hold back the gate and slip through it, but it slipped back and wedged him in.” Ultimately, he had to be detangled from the turnstile by MTA personnel.

And that’s not the only wild feat in the news this week. Christopher Swain, an activist swimmer who has already plunged into the Gowanus Canal and Newtown Creek, swam the East River last Thursday from Greenpoint to Brooklyn Bridge Park in order raise awareness for the global refugee crisis. He took off from Greenpoint’s India Street Ferry Dock, and finished his journey at Pier 5 in Brooklyn Bridge Park. Continue reading

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A Duck on the G Train, A Massage For Your Period and the Best Place to Photograph The Kosciuszko Bridge—The Hook-Up 8/25

Merry Pranksters All Aboard on Lombardy Street via The Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Merry Pranksters All Aboard on Lombardy Street via The Brooklyn Daily Eagle

Do you feel like things have been pretty quacked in Greenpoint this week? You’re not wrong. On Monday night, a leashed duck boarded the G Train, and as you can see from the video, he was not too pleased to be there.

If you’re feeling as stressed as that duck, and you think your period might have something to do with it, Massage Greenpoint (37 Greenpoint Avenue) has you covered. They’ve just rolled out “The Moon Cycle Massage,” aimed at alleviating those monthly aches.

The Brooklyn Daily Eagle went on a hunt for the best place in the neighborhood to photograph the new Kosciuszko Bridge, and concluded it’s a tough task. But they did manage to snag a pic of an ultra groovy bus on Lombardy Street.   Continue reading

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It’s A Mirage, Live Band Plays As Kosciuszko Falls, & Gas Passing—The Hook-Up 4/7

Scene from our Greenpointers Valentines Market
This weekend we’re hosting our Spring Market! Come on down to the Greenpoint Loft and sip palomas while you shop.

It’s sounding like troubled megaclub Brooklyn Mirage might actually open this summer. Party on!

The old Kosciuszko Bridge is going to be demolished this summer, and people are demanding an epic party, complete with a live orchestral score. Have you RSVP’d on Facebook yet?

There was a gas leak caused by construction along Wythe Avenue last weekend, and businesses and residents were evacuated for at least four hours. Continue reading

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