Author Archive

Who Uses and Likes NYC Condoms?
November 19th, 2009

All over the city NYC Condoms can be found. They’re free, plentiful and pretty easy to find. And if the 3.4 million distributed monthly are any indication, they’re quite popular, too.

But over two years after the city began the condom campaign, anecdotal evidence has trickled in suggesting that people want other options, such as larger sizes. So researchers set out to find out who was aware of the branded condom, whether they’ve used it, and if they were satisfied with it. They had 361 people fill out surveys at events where attendees were mostly either black or gay in attempt to address the needs of populations at elevated HIV risk. The results of the survey were published last month in the American Journal of Public Health.

“We found high levels of NYC Condom awareness, and awareness translated into use,” the report’s authors wrote. Just over 76 percent of respondents have seen the condoms, and 75 percent have actually picked them up. Just over 68 percent of those who “got some” actually used them. About 53 percent have used them, but didn’t necessarily pick them up themselves.

While college graduates were the most likely to have seen the condoms, they were least likely to use them. About 38 percent of graduates reported using them compared with just over 64 percent of those with only some college and those with a high school diploma or less.

Researchers noted that people want options. “Demand exists for alternatives to NYC Condoms,” they said. The average rating for the branded condom on a scale of 1-to-10 was 6.6. About 22 percent said they would like the city to offer an ultra-thin version, 18 percent said they’d like extra-strength, and 14 percent asked for a larger size.

The authors also pointed out the limitations of the study. Since the survey was aimed at an at-risk population; only chose those who were at least 18-years-old; and 50 percent of those approached refused to participate, the results “are not generalizable to all New Yorkers.”

On a related note, the NYC Condom is on Facebook, where you can send friends and acquaintances “e-condoms” if you ever felt the need.

By on November 19, 2009, 10:57 pm
In category: Health | Comments Off on Who Uses and Likes NYC Condoms?

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Weekly Web Wrap
November 13th, 2009

City Ranks Sixth Highest as Music Location
(Creative Class)
But Two City Districts Rank in Bottom Tenth for Happiness
(Creative Class)
The City and its Flooded Double
(BLDGBLOG)
The Black Middle Class
(Huffington Post)
Teachers Not Paid to Teach
(The Weekly Standard)
Palestine in Queens
(The Nation)
Westboro Baptist Church Vs. New York
(The New Republic)
Cartoonist’s Take on Albany’s Budget
(Matt Davies)
The Times’s Impact on Academic Treatment of the Atlantic Yards
(Atlantic Yards Report)
Economic Development in the Outer Boroughs
(DMI Blog)
One Block Off the Electric Grid in Brooklyn
(Idealist in NYC)
Rethinking Design for the Homeless
(Urban Omnibus)
State Legislative Ethics Filings
(NYPIRG)
Musing on the Role of Buses in the City
(Second Avenue Sagas)
City’s Capital Plan Grows
(IBO Web Blog)
Good Government Groups Ask for Investigation into Contribution Violations
(League of Women Voters of New York State)

By on November 13, 2009, 7:44 pm
In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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Yankees Beat Giants in Paper Tossing
November 12th, 2009

Judging by the amount of debris cleaned up after their victory parades, New Yorkers were more excited by the Yankees 27th World Series victory than the Giants third Super Bowl win last year. The tallies are in, and the Department of Sanitation reports cleaning up 56.5 tons of paper after the Yankees parade. The Giants left behind 36.5 tons.

Of the total cleaned this year, 18.2 tons were recycled by the Sanitation Department. But only about a ton of the confetti came from recycled paper, donated by the Downtown Alliance and Atlas Materials of Red Hook. In fact, it was widely reported that a number of important documents were tossed into the streets.

But neither can stand anywhere near the 5,000 tons of paper that filled the air during the 1945 V-J parade.

By on November 12, 2009, 2:15 pm
In category: Environment | Comments Off on Yankees Beat Giants in Paper Tossing

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New London's Troubles
November 11th, 2009

The possibility that the Atlantic Yards project could become a parking lot was a one of the criticisms leveled against the development by its critics last year. And it seems that similar circumstances actually unfolded in New London, Conn., the location of the landmark eminent domain case that effected the nation. Redevelopment plans for the area didn’t work out as planned and the site is left overgrown.

Now, Pfizer, the focus of the city’s economic development plans — and of its home condemnation — will be closing up shop there, adding to the fallow area’s troubles. “The announced closing of the New London site eight years after it opened to great fanfare came as a blow to a city that had counted on Pfizer’s multimillion-dollar facility to help revive its fortunes,” reports the Hartford Courant.

By on November 11, 2009, 3:13 pm
In category: Economy,Land Use,Law | Comments Off on New London's Troubles

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Weekly Web Wrap
November 6th, 2009

  • The New State Legislation Web Site
    (Open Legislation)
  • Price of Green Roofs Limits Benefits to Wealthy
    (The Faster Times)
  • – Senate Should Take Advantage of New Reforms
    (ReformNY)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on New Bottle Deposit Critics
    (Matt Davies)
  • Biking is Only Part of a Balanced Transportation System
    (Word on the Street)
  • Living Wages are Good for Private Sector, Too
    (DMI Blog)
  • Numbers Don’t Support Migration to ‘Cool Cities’
    (New Geography)
  • Bloomberg Campaign’s Online Spending
    (paidContent via NYConvergence)
  • Voters Repudiate Rich Man’s Politics
    (The New Republic)
  • Bloomberg Meets Law of Diminishing Returns
    (The American Prospect)
  • By on November 6, 2009, 10:01 am
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Stray Voltage Around the City
    November 5th, 2009

    Within a quarter-mile of Gotham Gazette’s offices, there were 103 incidents of stray voltage in the past 21 months. Five of them were potentially fatal, and one shocked a person or a pet.

    We know this due to a new map from the Jodie S. Lane Public Safety Foundation that lets you search for stray voltage around the city. The foundation was formed by the parents of a woman who was killed after being electrocuted by stray voltage from Con Edison’s system. The data for the maps are culled from reporting requirements that the city implemented after her death.

    By on November 5, 2009, 9:40 am
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    October 30th, 2009

  • Planning Students Being Integrated Into Community Boards
    (Architect’s Newspaper via Planetizen)
  • Regenerating the Northeast Corridor
    (The Transport Politic)
  • Bloomberg and the City’s Park System
    (Parks and Recreation via City Parks Blog)
  • New MTA Tax to Affect Freelancers
    (Village Voice)
  • Nets Arena Originally Scheduled to Open Today
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • Are Residency-Based Toll Discounts Constitutional?
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • City’s Bloggers Discuss Local Journalism’s Future
    (FishbowlNY via NYConvergence)
  • Charters Serve More ‘At Risk’ Students than City Averages
    (The Chalkboard)
  • By on October 30, 2009, 4:12 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    October 23rd, 2009

  • Arresting Gay Men for ‘Cruising’
    (Slate)
  • Consolidating the City’s Data Centers
    (GovTech)
  • Fighting for New York’s Urban Forests
    (Utne)
  • Increasing Federal Funds for Mass Transit
    (Huffington Post)
  • Assemblymember Hakim Jefferies Waffling on Atlantic Yards?
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • Challenging Bloomberg on the Economy
    (The Nation)
  • Brooklyn’s Green Impound Lot and the Public’s Response
    (Metropolis)
  • The Kingsbridge Armory Generates Unusual Dissent
    (Clawback)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Cutting the Budget
    (Adam Zyglis)
  • Historic Prospect Heights
    (Brownstoner)
  • Regulations Crushing City’s Small Businesses
    (City Journal)
  • Designing Urban Farms
    (Municipal Art Society)
  • Diversity in the City’s Foundations and Non-Profits
    (Idealist in NYC)
  • Utilizing Neighborhood Internet Domain Names
    (Campaign for .nyc)
  • By on October 23, 2009, 4:01 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Envisioning a New Sidewalk Shed
    October 21st, 2009

    The city-sponsored design competition to improve the ubiquitous royal blue sidewalk shed has been narrowed down to three finalists out of 164 submissions. Jurists in the urbanSHED competition selected the Tripod MOD(ule), urbanCLOUD, and the Urban Umbrella. Click here to see a slide show.

    “The winning solutions and the honorable mentions focus attention on how our streetscape can be improved by attention to the basics of architecture: light, air, materials, structure and form,” said Rick Bell, Executive Director of AIANY, which also sponsored the competition.

    The jury made its decision based on the shed’s impacts on pedestrians’ experience, the use of both natural and electric light, and improvements to structural components.

    The finalists will receive $5,000 to further develop their designs, and the ultimate winner will get $10,000. The Alliance for Downtown New York, another sponsor, will build a prototype of the winner’s design in lower Manhattan.

    By on October 21, 2009, 6:13 pm
    In category: Arts,Land Use | 2 Comments »

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    Urban Grime as History
    October 21st, 2009

    Incorporating the aesthetics of the natural reclamation of urban abandonment was part of the intent of the High Line park that snakes its way above the streets of the Meat Packing district. But street art wasn’t considered an essential element of that urban fabric, and graffiti that once adorned the walls along the park was replaced by the city with a solid slate of gray. But the actions have a number of people up in arms, calling it the destruction of history. And some are particularly worried about the “Revs” and “Cost” piece further down the line that remains for the time being. It’s not just graffiti, however. Metal sculptures that were once welded to a rusting cavernous area — now flooded with blue light — have also gone missing. Meanwhile, the city has made steps toward acquiring the High Line past 30th Street.

    By on October 21, 2009, 6:13 pm
    In category: Arts,Crime & Safety,Parks | Comments Off on Urban Grime as History

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    October 17th, 2009

  • Thompson: Battery Park City is a Model for Mega-Development
    (The Real Estate)
  • Analysis of the State Transportation Department’s Capital Plan
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Creating a ‘Recovery High School’
    (Huffington Post)
  • The Trouble With Finding Open Wi-Fi Networks
    (NYCwireless)
  • Action on the Job Front
    (DMI Blog)
  • Did the MTA Create Blight at the Atlantic Yards?
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • The Importance of the Atlantic Yards Case
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Historic Bed-Stuy
    (Brownstoner)
  • Charters, Bloomberg, and a Two-Tier System for Schools
    (New York Teacher)
  • Preservationists Should Take Accessibility Into Account
    (Metropolis)
  • Increasing Immigrant Involvement in Parks
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • de Blasio’s Campaign, Politics, and Interracial Marriage
    (Politico via The American Prospect)
  • By on October 17, 2009, 9:44 am
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Many New Yorkers Go Without Paid Sick Leave [Updated]
    October 15th, 2009

    If New Yorkers show symptoms of H1N1, or swine flu, they are first advised to avoid contact with others. Next, they are told to stay home from work. But a growing chorus of elected officials and activists are trying to make sure people don’t need to decide between paying rent and spreading the virus. And according to a new report, quite a few might have to make that choice.

    Nearly half of New Yorkers have no paid sick leave at their job, a new study by the Community Service Society and A Better Balance finds. And the number has been rising: 48 percent did not have the leave this year compared to 42 percent last year. Latino workers are most likely to go without, 72 percent of whom lack the leave. [Read the study here.]

    Last year, another study found that 52 percent of low-income working mothers had no sick leave.

    Councilmember Gale Brewer, lead sponsor of a bill to mandate paid sick leave, said. “This report shows that by making paid sick days a basic workplace standard, all employees – regardless of their income level – can care for themselves and their families when they get sick, instead of putting public health at risk.”

    Read the rest of this entry »

    By on October 15, 2009, 6:01 pm
    In category: Albany,Health | 2 Comments »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    October 9th, 2009

  • Cyclists and Walkers Account for Two-Thirds of Traffic Fatalities
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Yes, Calorie Labeling Works
    (The Atlantic)
  • Crowdsourcing a More Livable City
    (Inhabitat)
  • A Thumbs Down for City’s Bid to Promote Internet Industry
    (NYCwireless)
  • City’s Startup Fund Will Need to Be Able to Accept Failures
    (This is going to be BIG)
  • Hand-Held Devices Speed Up Housing Placement for Homeless
    (USA Today via Huffington Post)
  • Battling to Unionize Graduate Teachers at NYU
    (The American Prospect)
  • The City’s Manufacturing Economy
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Upstate Drilling
    (Matt Davies)
  • Water Metering Still Not Universal
    (IBO Web Log)
  • Interactive Graphic of City’s Systems
    (GOOD via Second Ave Sagas)
  • Making Money Off Eminent Domain at Atlantic Yards
    (Real Deal)
  • Silver Knew Atlantic Yards Affordable Units not Guaranteed
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • Developers Need Community Support, Which Need Affordable Housing
    (DMI Blog)
  • By on October 9, 2009, 6:10 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    The Eminent Domain State
    October 8th, 2009

    “New York is perhaps the worst state in the nation when it comes to eminent domain abuse — the forcible acquisition of private property by the government for private development,” according to a new report by the conservative Institute for Justice

    The study goes through a litany of examples of what they see as an unfair eminent domain process here. They point out that an area need only be considered in danger of becoming blighted in order to be condemned; describe a byzantine, opaque, and unaccountable hearing process; and focus on the short window of time for property owners to protest at inadequate proceedings.

    Nicole Gelinas, at NY Fiscal Watch, adds that the threat of eminent domain can freeze business activity and actually create blight.

    Although the report paints a bleak landscape of abuse in the state, it really doesn’t compare New York to other states. Another report by an arm of the Institute for Justice gave New York an ‘F’ – one of eight states to receive the grade – for failing to pass legislation reforming eminent domain.

    Hopefully New York can get off that list, writes Damon Root at Reason Magazine. Next week the Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments against the use of eminent domain for the Atlantic Yards proeject. Root says this case is an opportunity for the state “to start reining in these abuses”

    By on October 8, 2009, 6:25 pm
    In category: Community Development,Economy,Housing,Land Use,Law | 4 Comments »

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    Area's Economic Recovery Likely to Lag Nation's
    October 7th, 2009

    While the national recession is “likely over,” the the New York area’s recovery will likely lag behind, as the 14 percent of New Yorkers that are unemployed and underemployed New Yorkers probably assumed.

    Although the pace of the area’s economic decline eased considerably this spring, according to a report by the New York Fed last week, downsizing in the finance sector poses a serious risk going forward. Historically, recessions in the area, and in New York particularly, hit later and harder than the rest of the nation, and they last longer. But that precedent, combined with new financial regulation, government shortfalls and less hiring in traditionally stabilizing occupations will increase the risk that the area’s recovery will lag.

    With an outsized dependence on financial services, the “near collapse” of the financial system wreaked particular havoc here. The sector can account for 30 percent of all earnings in the city. And due to continued firm closings and consolidation, as well as new regulations that could restrict new hiring, the sector may not rebound to employment levels seen prior to the crash.

    By on October 7, 2009, 3:39 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    October 2nd, 2009

  • The Road Ahead for the City’s Non-Profits
    (Huffington Post)
  • Inside the Terrorist Take Down
    (Newsweek)
  • The Green Opportunities of Old Buildings
    (Municipal Art Society)
  • Making the City’s List of Databases Searchable
    (Transparency Corps)
  • City Launches Flu Web Portal
    (Health Department)
  • PlaNYC2030 Continues Moving Forward
    (Citiwire.net via Planetizen)
  • Brewer on the Hazards of Bedbugs
    (YouTube)
  • Stringer Calls for Ban on Drilling in Watershed
    (Scott Stringer’s Blog)
  • Housing and Space Standards in New York City
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • More on the Plan to Give Superintendents Green Training
    (Green Building in Gotham)
  • Albany Interests Collide in Crowley-Ognibene Race
    (City Hall)
  • Results for Electronics Recycling Bin Competition
    (Core77)
  • By on October 2, 2009, 3:54 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Weeklyn Web Wrap
    September 25th, 2009

  • Is the Terror Plot Really Shut Down?
    (Newsweek)
  • Most Stalled Developments are Residential and in Brooklyn
    (IBO Weblog)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Obama’s Message to Paterson
    (Matt Davies)
  • Another Cartoonist’s Take on Obama’s Message to Paterson
    (Adam Zyglis)
  • Before Google Maps, the City Had OASIS
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • Region’s Transit Sets Record in Gas Saved
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • How is the City Doing on the Greening Front?
    (Sallan Foundation)
  • A Musing on Governor’s Island
    (Metropolis)
  • A Harlem Model for Neighborhood-Based Approaches to Poverty
    (The American Prospect)
  • Why the City is Greener Than Vermont
    (Time)
  • It’s Good that Gehry isn’t Designing the Atlantic Yards
    (Slate)
  • Putting Civilian Review Back into the Complaint Board
    (Huffington Post)
  • Brooklyn, the Most Frugal City
    (Brownstoner)
  • How Best to Accelerate New York Startups?
    (innonate)
  • Mark Griffith to Campaign on Working Families Party Line
    (City Hall)
  • Committee Reports Would Help Courts’ with Legislative Intent
    (ReformNY)
  • By on September 25, 2009, 2:29 pm
    In category: Gotham City | 2 Comments »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    September 18th, 2009

  • High Line Uses Wood from Rainforests
    (The Indypendent)
  • New Public School to have Video Game-Based Curriculum
    (Metropolis)
  • City Prepares for Rising Seas
    (Yale Environment 360)
  • New York Second Biggest Hub for Tech Innovators
    (InformationWeek via NYConvergence)
  • Why Charter Schools are Proliferating
    (The Chalkboard)
  • Atlantic Yards Rendering, Featuring Congestion
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • Smoke-Free Planet
    (Slate)
  • Conflux Festival Begins
    (WNYC Culture)
  • Working Families Party Builds Progressive Power
    (The Nation)
  • Councilmember-elect Lander Criticizes Atlantic Yards Approval
    (No Land Grab)
  • Council Targets Roaming Tour Buses
    (Streetsblog)
  • Albany Tax Receipts Continue to Shrink
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • ‘Make History’ Gathers 9/11 Stories
    (Core77)
  • By on September 18, 2009, 11:21 am
    In category: Gotham City | 1 Comment »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    September 11th, 2009

  • Bloomberg, Uninterrupted
    (Next American City)
  • Sharpton to Endorse Vann Challenger, Mark Griffith
    (City Hall News)
  • Council Independence (Or Lack Thereof)
    (Daily Politics)
  • Supporting the Domestic Worker’s Bill of Rights
    (The Nation)
  • Why New York’s Tech Scene Lags
    (Chris Dixon via NYConvergence)
  • A Good Legislative Process Would Have Helped the Reform Bill
    (ReformNY)
  • Park(ing) Day Next Week
    (Time’s Up!)
  • A Bronx Travelogue
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • Fighting the Use of Stimulus Bonds for Gentrification Plan
    (Clawback)
  • Stringer as a Teenage Community Board Member
    (Municipal Art Society)
  • Crocker Snyder’s Unsavory Campaign Donors
    (Village Voice)
  • By on September 11, 2009, 5:38 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    September 4th, 2009

  • Making a Labor/Environment Coalition Work
    (The Sallan Foundation)
  • Verizon Service Quality Lags
    (PULP Blog)
  • Making Open Data a Priority at the MTA
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • A First Step in Cataloging the City’s Databases
    (Campaign for .nyc)
  • Bloomberg Shorting Mass Transit
    (DMI Blog)
  • PropertyShark Launches Crime Maps
    (Curbed)
  • de Blasio Site Offers Crowdsourced Slumlord Map
    (Brownstoner)
  • Should the City Have Cleaned the Highline Graffiti?
    (iHeart)
  • Gawker Traffic Beats LA Times
    (Business Insider via NYConvergence)
  • Citywide Carnival of Flip Flopping Candidates on Atlantic Yards
    (No Land Grab)
  • Toll Hikes Won’t Save the City’s Bridges and Tunnels
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • When an Election Lawyer’s Campaign Work is a Donation
    (City Hall)
  • MTA Takes Proposals on WiFi in Subways
    (Information Week)
  • Paid Sick Days Will Help Stop Swine Flu
    (Huffington Post)
  • Should Economic Development be Region-by- Region Instead of Statewide?
    (Governing Magazine)
  • By on September 4, 2009, 3:11 pm
    In category: Gotham City | Comments Off on Weekly Web Wrap

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    Gotham Gazette the Place for Politics and Policy

    Gotham Gazette is published by Citizens Union Foundation and is made possible by support from the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, the Altman Foundation,the Fund for the City of New York and donors to Citizens Union Foundation. Please consider supporting Citizens Union Foundation's public education programs. Critical early support to Gotham Gazette was provided by the Charles H. Revson Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

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