Critics of de Blasio’s plan to build a $2.5 billion streetcar linking the Queens and Brooklyn waterfronts say the plan is all about improving real estate values, not the transportation network, according to Crain’s. While improving bus service would cost less than half that sum, de Blasio staffers argue that improved bus service would not yield the increased property tax revenue along the route to pay for it.
The New York Times revisits Brooklyn’s Fourth Avenue “the canyon of mediocrity” as it was once dubbed, whose primary benefit seemed to be providing overflow housing for yuppies who couldn’t find space in Park Slope proper. Now developers like JDS are hoping they can fetch up to $3.6 million for condos on the charmless stretch, which would be among the highest price paid for a new-construction condo away from the Brooklyn waterfront.
New York’s 32,000 HDFC co-ops may not be affordable much longer, as a tax break for maintenance is set to expire and many apartments have been selling for high prices, despite high flip taxes and income restrictions imposed on buyers, DNAinfo reports. While some 84 percent of HDFC co-ops sold for less than $500,000 during the last four years, some have topped $1 million, even $2 million, with retirees and trust-funders skirting the income caps.
Nuisance abatements, which were created in the 1970s to rout the sex industry from Times Square, are used to displace tenants from their apartments even without drug convictions, The New York Daily News, in connection with ProPublica reports. “The vast majority of residential cases involve allegations of drug sales. Some target traffickers who are convicted of moving large amounts of narcotics through their apartments; others minor offenders caught with amounts more consistent with personal use. But many of these lawsuits ensnare people like El-Shabazz, whose criminal cases have been, or ultimately are, dismissed.”
The two brothers who run family business Circo Pastry Shop in Bushwick have worked to keep their Italian pastry shop relevant to the neighborhood’s changing demographics, DNAinfo reports. To wit: the holy cannoli donut they developed filled with cannoli cream and topped with cinnamon and chips of cannoli crust.
Speaking of family dynasties: John L. Tishman, the patriarch of Tishman Realty and Construction, who while at the helm of the company his grandfather founded, built the John Hancock Tower in Chicago and the Twin Towers, died at home on Saturday, The New York Times reports. He was 90.