On the Market: Qatar Pours Money Into Manhattan, Midtown East Re-emerges

Qatar's latest buy?

Qatar’s latest buy?

Qatar isn’t only interested in investing in fancy Upper East Side townhouses: the country’s investment authority is also in talks to pour hundreds of millions of dollars into the financing of Vornado’s super-luxe condo at 220 Central Park South, The Wall Street Journal reports.

Speaking of very tall towers, it looks like de Blasio hasn’t forgotten about Midtown East after all. Crain’s reports that next month the mayor will release his timeline for the rezoning. Mr. de Blasio had promised to take the rezoning back up after it got killed last fall by the City Council, who felt that the plan was a rush-job being shoved through by a departing mayor.

Also coming soon(ish), according to Crain’s: two affordable housing programs, the New Infill Homeownership Opportunities Program and the Neighborhood Construction Program, will likely be rolled out in 2015.

So much for America’s urban revival: The Wall Street Journal reports that after two years of solid urban growth, Americans have started to shift back to the suburbs, with urban growth rates decreasing in 20 of the nation’s biggest cities, including New York. Though experts say that it’s not a mass exodus back and likely never will be (be still the beating hearts of New York Times trend reporters!).

Maybe it has something to do with the fact that despite lots of campaign promises about improving urban mobility through the use of non-automobile infrastructure, transit improvements under Obama have been disappointing, as the Atlantic Cities contends. While many of us had hoped for high-speed rail and money focused on downtown thoroughfares rather than interstate highways, we got bikeshare and silly streetcars.

Also silly? How many useful goods NYU students throw out when they leave their dorms for the summer. Gothamist snoops through the trash and finds freshly-laundered NYU t-shirts, mini fridges and whiteboards that read “to do: clean WHOLE bathroom.”

Clinton Hill’s Hot Bird has banned children, Brownstoner reports. Should we feel relief, outrage or simply mystification that babies in bars—allowed or not allowed—has become one of the most pressing social questions of our time?

Another pressing social issue of our time: Uptown vs. Downtown. Obviously Downtown is so much cooler. Or at least it thinks it’s so much cooler. But is that really cool? In any event, this Carnegie Hill duplex spotted by Curbed wants to be downtown so bad. It can’t stop talking about its “look and feel of downtown space.”