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Lack of Drainage Under India Street May Take Years to Fix

Commuters cross the flooded India Street entrance to the NYC Ferry during the rain on Wednesday evening (via Jonathan Vanasco)

The routine flooding of the India Street entrance to the NYC Ferry is finally receiving attention from city officials, but the lack of sewage and drainage infrastructure underneath the street may take years to fully construct, NBC 4 reports.

NBC 4 paid a visit to India Street to speak with Greenpoint ferry commuters on Thursday to see how they’re dealing with the flood waters, that Greenpointers reported is an ongoing problem. The current makeshift pedestrian walkway is sandwiched between “The Greenpoint” waterfront development and construction fences in an area prone to flooding.

 

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Taking the #eastriverferry is usually great. I have 11 screws in my foot and take it daily; until this happens. The flooding is a constant when over a 1” downfall occurs and began only once this 40+ story high rise started going up on India Street. As a trained architect and Professor of Architecture in Brooklyn, I’m ashamed of this developer, the contractor, the mayor and our borough “reps” who haven’t stepped up sooner. No one cares about ADA? Or simply doing the right thing and fixing infrastructure? @nycmayor wants to develop more AND run for President, all while not taking care of his own own city? What a joke. Kudos to @greenpointers and NBC 4 news for following up on this over many of our travelers stories recently. My first photo was from December 2018. @billdeblasio @nycmayor @nyc @eastriverferry #yoelgoldman #mackrealestategroup #palinenterprises #ismaelleyvaarchitects #pandisciogreen ? Really?? @newyorkyimby #urbandevelopmentpartners @nyccouncil #councilmanstephenlevin

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“It’s impacting hundreds of commuters and it totally undermines all of our efforts to have the ferry be a viable way to commute to work,” NYC Councilman Stephen Levin tells NBC 4 in the video.

“It’s still a public street from our understanding, which means as far as I can tell, that it’s the city’s responsibility to make sure there’s adequate drainage,” Levin said.

NYC Ferry canceled service to the India St. stop in Greenpoint on Thursday night.

The NYC Ferry implemented a shuttle bus to transport commuters last night as service at India Street was bypassed during the rain. Serviced returned to normal on Friday morning.

The official reason for last night’s ferry service disruption was “ponding” along India Street.

A city spokesman told NBC 4 that they’re “working on a long-term solution to get the sewers up and running,” but that may take “years.”

 

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$2,544 for One-Bedroom Apartment in Greenpoint Affordable Housing Lottery

196 Freeman St. (Via NYC Housing Connect)

A handful of new “affordable” apartments have hit the market via the NYC Housing Connect lottery. The former three-story mixed-use building at 196 Freeman St. between Manhattan Avenue and Mcguinness Boulevard was demolished to make way for the construction of the new four-story building with 10 apartments; apply by May 6th.

At 196 Freeman St. a one-bedroom unit is available for $2,544 per month for one to two occupants with an annual household income between $87,223 – $108,550. Market rate one-bedroom units at the building are listed for $2,850 per month.

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Valentines Wastewater Treatment Tour Registration Opens Thursday (1/31)

Participants on a tour of the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant march towards the digester eggs. Photo: Megan Penmann
Participants on a tour of the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant march towards the digester eggs. (Photo: Megan Penmann)

Registration opens tomorrow Thursday, Jan. 31 at 12 p.m., for the annual Valentines Day tour of the futuristic digester eggs at the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant.  The tour will be on Saturday, Feb. 9, with four different sessions at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., 3 p.m. and 5 p.m.; more info is available here.

Participants on a tour of the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, inside the digester eggs. Photo: Megan Penmann
Participants on a tour of the Newtown Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant, inside the digester eggs. Photo: Megan Penmann

From the NYC Department of Environmental Protection:

The Digester Egg Tour starts with an overview of the wastewater treatment process—an essential part of protecting public health and NYC’s waterways. After, we treat guests to unobstructed views of the Manhattan, Brooklyn and Queens skylines from the observation deck, a glass-enclosed walkway built atop our state-of-the art digester eggs. Learn more about the Newtown Creek Digester Eggs.

The Digester Egg Tour starts at the Visitor Center at Newtown Creek, located in Brooklyn’s Greenpoint neighborhood. We are easy to spot—just look for the bright orange building. The entrance is near the intersection of Greenpoint Avenue and Humboldt Street at 329 Greenpoint Avenue Brooklyn, NY 11222.

Looking out a rainy window at the digester eggs and catwalks. The digester eggs were lit up red for Valentine’s Day 2018. (Photo: Lucie Levine)

Tours take place 3 times a year, in February, April and October, and are free and open to the public, ages 12 and older. Close-toed shoes are a must, and cameras are allowed!

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Delicious Eats for Under $10 in Greenpoint

Dining out doesn’t always mean shelling out exuberant amounts of money in Greenpoint. While the many newer high-end food destinations get most of the headlines and accolades, the dependable and affordable food options in Greenpoint deserve a shout out from time to time. We asked Greenpointers readers earlier this week what their favorite food options are for under $10, here are the recommendations:

Acapulco (1116 Manhattan Ave.): This Mexican restaurant on the far northern end of Manhattan Avenue was by far the most recommended by Greenpointers readers. The burritos and breakfast options at Acapulco are local picks for cheap eats: Chicken, chorizo and steak burritos are $7.25 (veggie burrito is $6) and breakfast omelet platters cost $5.50. Hours: Mon. – Fri. 7 a.m. to 10 p.m.; Sat. and Sun. 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.

 

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Peter Pan (727 Manhattan Ave.) turns out classic donuts and the line is often out the door on weekends, but many people opt for breakfast sandwiches, specifically bacon egg and cheese on either a bagel or roll, which costs under $5. Hours:  Mon. – Fri. 4:30 a.m. – 8pm; Sat. 5 a.m. – 8 p.m.; Sun. 5:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.

Bacon egg and cheese on a poppy seed roll at Peter Pan (Robert V. yelp)

Frankel’s Delicatessen (631 Manhattan Ave.) is a throwback Jewish-style deli that is packed with the brunch crowd on weekend mornings.  The pastrami, egg and cheese sandwich is a Greenpoint favorite and costs $9. Hours: Mon. to Sun. from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Egg, cheese and pastrami on a roll at Frankel’s ( Ron C., Yelp)

Karczma (136 Greenpoint Ave.) is a bonified Polish food destination, and the menu offers delicious dishes at relatively affordable price points ( a lunch plate with stuffed cabbage, pierogis and soup costs $11.50). Greenpointers readers recommend the white borscht served in a bread bowl that is accompanied by mashed potatoes garnished with bacon for $5.75. Hours: Mon. to Thur. from 12 p.m to 10:30 p.m.; Fri. and Sat. from 12 p.m. to 11:30 p.m.; Sun. 12 p.m. to 10 p.m.

White borscht served in a bread bowl at Karczma (Beril E., Yelp)

God Bless Deli (818 Manhattan Ave.) is a bodega with a strong local following that has Middle Eastern and American food options 24 hours/day. Everything on the bodega menu is under $10, but readers cite the falafel sandwich ($3.49) and chicken over rice ($5) as their favorites. Continue reading

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Mae West’s Gay Drama That Shocked 1920s America

Artwork by Michael DiMotta – sketched for the stage play “Courting Mae West,” written by LindaAnn LoSchiavo, DGA

Mae West was much more than a local-born movie star or even a sex symbol. She was a playwright, a woman decades ahead of her time in dramatizing questions of gender and sexuality. Her views almost a century ago were remarkably progressive when it came to homosexuality and those views were never better dramatized than in her shocking play entitled “The Drag.”

Even today, in a time when society has largely embraced gay marriage and become more accepting, West’s play would be so offensive to some that it still could not be staged in many places in America. In puritanical 1920s America, the play was considered outrageous and morally offensive.

West, who grew up locally and began her theatrical career on Brooklyn vaudeville stages at the age of five, said that the theater was her greatest education. She had little formal schooling, but the stage taught her all she needed to know. She soon became friendly with a number of gay theatrical professionals and West immediately empathized with gay people. She enjoyed spending time in gay clubs in the west village and one night she hit upon the idea of writing a play about gay men.

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