Author Archive

Weekly Web Wrap
August 28th, 2009

  • Allowing Water – and New Waterfronts – Into the City
    (Regional Plan Association)
  • Ballot Access Laws Keep Candidates Off Ballot
    (Room Eight)
  • Can Bloomberg Pay Poor People to Do the ‘Right’ Thing?
    (The American Prospect)
  • Campaign Finance Board Must Pursue Cheats During Elections
    (City Hall News)
  • The Green Superintendent Training Program
    (Habitat)
  • Where’s the Youth Voice on Planning?
    (Municipal Art Society)
  • Rome vs Gotham
    (New Geography)
  • City Shouldn’t Subsidize Developments that Create Poverty-Level Jobs
    (DMI Blog)
  • Sunset Park Gets a High school
    (Brownstoner)
  • Coalition Calls for Reform to State’s Juvenile System
    (NYCLU)
  • Photo Essay of Forest Hills Gardens
    (Slate)
  • Parsing the the Results of Mayor’s Housing Plan
    (Huffington Post)
  • State Could Become Stem Cell Capital of Nation
    (SEED Magazine)
  • By on August 28, 2009, 6:32 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    August 21st, 2009

  • Low-Income Broadband Penetration Problems for State
    (PULP Blog)
  • Union to Train 1,000 Supers in Green Techniques
    (1,000supers.com)
  • STACKD Links People in Office Buildings
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • New York and the Film Tax Credit
    (IBO Web Log)
  • Where 73 Citywide Candidates Stand on Transportation Issues
    (Streetsblog)
  • The Failure of Roosevelt Island’s Main Street
    (Huffington Post)
  • The Need for More Truck Management
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • By on August 21, 2009, 5:45 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    August 14th, 2009

  • Albany Makes Labor Contracts Available Online (City Doesn’t)
    (IBO Web Blog)
  • Rev. Billy on Consumerism in New York
    (Huffington Post)
  • Rethinking the Grand Concourse
    (Architect’s Newspaper)
  • The Brooklyn Typology Project
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • Why Livable Cities Rankings are Wrong
    (New Geography)
  • Another Bronx City Council Candidate Bumped from Ballot
    (Bronx News Network)
  • The Draft State Energy Plan
    (PULP Blog)
  • Transit Workers’ Raise Highest Since 1966
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • By on August 14, 2009, 11:23 am
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    August 7th, 2009

  • Bloomberg and Small Businesses
    (New Geography)
  • Bloomberg’s Transportation Record and Rhetoric
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Dormitory Authority Minor Victim of Structured Finance
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Amalgamated Housing Cooperative, a Place that Matters
    (Municipal Art Society)
  • Con Ed Launches Smart Grid Pilot
    (TreeHugger)
  • New York Ranked Best City for Singles
    (Forbes)
  • New York Should Follow San Francisco’s Lead on Health Care
    (Huffington Post)
  • Searchable 3D Map of New York for iPhones
    (Digital Urban)
  • What Moynihan Station Could Learn from Grand Central
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • How Public Comments Can Affect Atlantic Yards
    (Atlantic Yards Report)
  • By on August 7, 2009, 1:46 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    July 24th, 2009

  • Possible Deal on Mayoral Control of Schools
    (City Room)
  • Public Advocate Calls for Ending Fingerprinting for Food Stamps
    (Public Advocate’s Corner)
  • State Has Sixth Highest Number of Discouraged Workers
    (US News and World Report)
  • Does Bloomberg Still Want to be President?
    (Huffington Post)
  • Unearthing a Buried Bronx Stream
    (New York Moon)
  • DUMBO’s Early Free Rents as Community Development Model
    (Where Blog)
  • Measuring the New Senate Rules Against the Assembly
    (ReformNY)
  • Evolving the Open Hydrant Tradition
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • Having Private Employers, Health Unions Accept Concessions
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • By on July 24, 2009, 3:05 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    July 17th, 2009

  • Federal Report Shows State’s Failure to Narrow Racial Test Score Gap
    (Edwize)
  • Outdoors “Free Public Wi-Fi” Connection Actually Virus
    (NYCWireless)
  • Ferries and Public Access Crucial for Waterfront Revitalization
    (Regional Plan Association)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Espada’s New Position
    (Adam Zyglis)
  • Paying for MTA Maintenance and Operations With Debt is a Bad Idea
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Impact of Renewable Energy Goals on Low-Income Residents Overlooked
    (PULP Blog)
  • New Project Tracks Where Waste Ends Up
    (Inhabitat)
  • Proposal for Piers That Generate Energy from Tidal Action
    (Metropolis Magazine)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Albany Lawmaker’s Staff Raises
    (Matt Davies)
  • State Tax Collections Worst on Record
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Question and Answer with Author of NYPD Confidential
    (Time Magazine)
  • New York City Slavery Walking Tour
    (Huffington Post)
  • Proposal for Regional Rail in New York City
    (The Transport Politic)
  • Investigation Into Hospital Involved in Seminaro Case Unclear
    (Queens Campaigner)
  • By on July 17, 2009, 3:14 pm
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    Cuomo Can Investigate Banks for Discriminatory Lending
    July 10th, 2009

    New York prosecutors have gotten permission from the US Supreme Court to investigate whether national banks discriminate against people of color when lending. Last week’s ruling does not allow state prosecutors to subpoena the banks, but can take them to court if they think they’re breaking state fair-lending laws.

    The case, which spanned two presidential administrations, was brought by New York Attorney General Andrew Cuomo, who sought to pick up an investigation started by his predecessor Eliot Spitzer in 2005.

    In an interview with Reuters, Spitzer said that regulators lost an opportunity to investigate lending practices that eventually brought the economy to its knees. “We didn’t quite know how much or in what form, but there was much there that was troubling,” Spitzer said. “Obviously, it’s a little late to forestall the cataclysm that emerged when the subprime debt fuse finally exploded.”

    “Had Spitzer been able to investigate the banks,” Stephanie Mencimer of Mother Jones chimes in, “he might have put the brakes on some of these practices fully two years before the entire subprime industry collapsed and brought the rest of the economy down with it.”

    But the Wall Street Journal editorial board thinks investigations such as this cause more problems than they will solve. “Eliot Spitzer has departed the national stage in ignominy,” they wrote the day after the ruling, “but the damage he did as an unrestrained state Attorney General lives on, notably in a dubious 5-4 victory yesterday before the Supreme Court.”

    Still, Errol Louis of the Daily News points out that there was plenty of reason to investigate the banks. “Spitzer was more than justified in making inquiries in 2005, when his office discovered that more than 80 percent of all high-cost subprime loans in the New York metro area went to black and Latino borrowers. The comparable number for white borrowers was 9.4 percent.”

    By on July 10, 2009, 4:45 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    July 10th, 2009

  • Debate Surrounding Closing of Schools on Muslim Holidays
    (The New Republic)
  • Bloomberg Articulates Need for Paid Sick Days
    (DMI Blog)
  • Radio Shack Levied New Sales Tax Before State Approval
    (Consumerist)
  • Should Transit Be Free?
    (Reuters Blogs via Planetizen)
  • What Data Should the City Make Public, What Should Be Done With It?
    (NYC Big Apps Ideas)
  • Back to Square One on Senate Reform?
    (ReformNY)
  • How Has Post 9/11 Security Affected Public Space?
    (Metropolis Magazine)
  • Liu Rejects Claim Politics Held Up Popular Bill of Comptroller Opponent
    (Queens Campaigner)
  • By on July 10, 2009, 2:33 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    July 5th, 2009

  • Senate Technology Team Moves Forward Amidst Stalemate
    (InformationWeek)
  • City Competition Seeks Internet-Based Open Government Programs
    (Government Technology)
  • Comptroller Debate Video
    (BronxNet)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Senate Special Sessions
    (Adam Zyglis)
  • New Freight Trains Help Reduce Air Pollution in South Bronx
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Mayoral Control: A Sensible Start, If Done Sensibly
    (Teachers College Record)
  • Why New York is Not a Top Ten Green City
    (Huffington Post)
  • Debate Over Green Building Bill
    (Sallan Foundation)
  • By on July 5, 2009, 3:24 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    June 26th, 2009

  • If I Knew BLANK About New York, I’d BLANK
    (Open My City)
  • Project Aims to Green Space Below Queensboro Bridge
    (Urban Omnibus)
  • What New York Can Learn About Dutch Flood Prevention
    (NY 400 Blog)
  • Subway Station Naming Rights Absurdly Underpriced
    (BLDGBLOG)
  • The Downside of Small Schools
    (Huffington Post)
  • State Approves $3 Million in Biotech Startup Tax Credits
    (GenomeWeb via FierceBiotech)
  • New Yorkers Who Prefer “Daddy” to Mayor
    (Alternet)
  • Five Open Tenants of NYSenate.gov
    (Talkin’ Bout a Revolution)
  • State Change to Graduation Stats Could Implode Gains
    (Edwize)
  • New Budget No Longer Plans to Eliminate School Trailers
    (IBO Weblog)
  • Comptroller Supports Expansion of Cheap In-City Commuter Rail Travel
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Senate Power Struggle
    (Matt Davies)
  • By on June 26, 2009, 10:21 am
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    June 19th, 2009

  • New York Home Prices Forecast to Drop 40 Percent
    (Time)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Albany
    (Adam Zyglis)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Albany and Iran
    (Matt Davies)
  • Weprin Willing to Give up Comfortable Albany Seat
    (Queens Campaigner)
  • The Merits of Full Wrap Ads on Empty Storefronts
    (Public Ad Campaign)
  • Report on Child Deaths Offers No Solutions to Biggest Problem: Traffic
    (Streetsblog)
  • Brooklyn Academy of Musics Green Rooftop Aviary for Migrating Birds
    (Inhabitat)
  • By on June 19, 2009, 2:42 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    June 12th, 2009

  • Senate Control More Important After 2010 Redistricting
    (Ballot Box)
  • Breakdown of the 2008 Election Results
    (Prime News)
  • Bloomberg, Quinn Discuss Green Building Laws
    (Charlie Rose)
  • Councilmember Nelson Aide Gets Large Earmark
    (City Council Watch)
  • Chow Takes Fundraising Lead in Race for Liu’s Seat
    (The Queens Campaigner)
  • Work Continues on Making Senate Data Accessible Online
    (NY Senate CIO)
  • Did Paterson Agree to No Layoffs for Two Years in Union Deal?
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Ruiz Declines to Challenge Baez in Bronx Council Race
    (Bronx News Network)
  • New Magazine Covers Strategic Planning and Design
    (CATALYST via Core 77)
  • Making Grocers More Appetizing to Developers
    (Planetizen)
  • Train Tunnel Project Receives $3 Billion from Feds
    (Regional Plan Association)
  • Photographs of Harlem in its Most Neglected Age
    (Slate)
  • City Seeks New Approach to Ad-Based Free WiFi
    (GovTech)
  • Bloomberg Might Yet Buy Your Love
    (Huffington Post)
  • Advocates Call for Redirection of $900 Million to Schools
    (Manhattan Borough President’s Blog)
  • By on June 12, 2009, 1:02 pm
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    A Coup for Reform?
    June 11th, 2009

    Today, a coalition of good government groups called on the Senate to continue along the road to reform. The coalition, of which the Brennan Center, NYPIRG and others are a part of, call for the posting of records online in an accessible format. Also, they are urging that bills be allowed to move out of committee without the cooperation of leadership. Furthermore, they are pushing for the Senate to allow individual members to bring bills to the floor for debate and vote.

    The recommendations come amidst a coup by the Senate GOP, which went into motion under the banner of reform. Indeed, the newly instated majority passed a series of rules changes. Among them is the creation of a “motion for consideration,” which allows for members to move for a vote on whether or not to place a bill on the active list of legislation to be considered.

    But it’s up to the acting majority to continue with the rules or not, since they are not law, as Gerald Benjamin, a SUNY professor, notes. “The majority – however it is constituted – adopts its own rules (e.g. There is no commitment to leadership term limits, except the will of future majorities to stick with this rule), and may go back to the status quo ante, or worse,” he points out.

    “But it is also possible that the genie could be out of the bottle. Whatever their individual and colelctive motivation, a majority of the legislature has voted for real reforms.”

    By on June 11, 2009, 3:45 pm
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    Weekly Web Wrap
    June 5th, 2009

  • Harlem Police Shooting was ‘Quiet Bias’
    (The American Prospect)
  • City Should Mandate Paid Sick Leave
    (DMI Blog)
  • Should the MTA Really Create a Direct Link to Stewart Airport?
    (The Transport Politic)
  • Video About Fresh Kills Park
    (The City Concealed)
  • High Line Stories
    (Sundance)
  • Norman Oder on Atlantic Yards Oversight
    (Brian Lehrer Live)
  • Campaigning in Support of the Unincorporated Business Tax
    (Freelancers Union)
  • Cartoonist’s Take on Bloomberg’s Campaign Spending
    (Matt Davies)
  • City Can’t Tell How Much Money it Should Expect to Have
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • What Does One Second’s Worth of Bottles Consumed Look Like?
    (Inhabitat)
  • Four Pieces of Important Transportation Legislation
    (Tri-State Transportation Campaign)
  • Bio on Diamondstone, Council Candidate in Brooklyn’s 33rd District
    (Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn)
  • Manhattan District Attorney Candidates on Vehicular Crime
    (Streetsblog)
  • By on June 5, 2009, 12:51 pm
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    Cuts Could Place City Libraries at Bottom
    June 2nd, 2009

    If proposed library cuts go through, the city will rank the lowest of the nation’s 22 largest library systems in terms of average operating hours, according to a survey by Councilmember Vincent Gentile’s office. The study showed that the city’s three library systems would round out the bottom of the list, with Manhattan at number 20, Queens at 21, and Brooklyn dead last.

    The survey – an update to one previously conducted in 2007 by the Center for an Urban Future – was included in a letter by 13 council members urging the mayor to abandon his proposal to cut the libraries’ budgets by 22 percent.

    “It appears that you do not consider libraries to be a priority in this fiscal climate. We couldnt disagree more our support of libraries and the preservation of their funding is more important to the vitality and future of New York City than ever,” the letter states. “If we cut $46.5 million from libraries budgets, individuals will become isolated, community groups will lose some of their impact and the unemployed will have to struggle harder to find work.”

    “Tough economic times, when we have them, only make libraries that much more important,” Gentile said at a rally against the cuts last week. “Whether it be looking for a job, or using some free resources, reading materials, or jobs training, or skills training, you find those at the library. And you find them for free.”

    The cuts would result in nearly 1,000 layoffs and no weekend service at many branches. Meanwhile, library attendance is up 12 percent.

    By on June 2, 2009, 2:49 pm
    In category: Economy,Measuring UP,Public Finance,Social Services | 1 Comment »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    May 29th, 2009

  • How Should the State Use Technology to Improve?
    (State Senate Blog)
  • Bomb Plot Spurs Demand For More Security Funds
    (The Jewish Week)
  • A Call to Open 311
    (techPresident via Daily Politics)
  • Albanys Spending Cap
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Breaking Up Commuter Rail Bottlenecks
    (Regional Plan Association)
  • Supervised Drug-Injection Facilities in New York? We Should and Can
    (Alternet)
  • By on May 29, 2009, 3:21 pm
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    How Serious Was the Terror Plot?
    May 22nd, 2009

    Wednesday’s thwarted terrorist plot sparked quite the conversation amongst the national press this week.

    First, Christopher Dickey, author of “Securing the City: Inside America’s Best Counterterror Force – the NYPD,” seeks to explain the rational behind publicizing such attempted acts.

    “There are several basic reasons these cases are publicized,” he writes in Newsweek. “The obvious ones are that the alleged terrorists are breaking the law, and even if they are inept they might succeed in hurting people. Another is to heighten public awareness that a terrorist threat continues. In many cases the NYPD chooses not to prosecute, preferring to disrupt plots and recruit new sources of intelligence. And the public revelation of a case like this also has a useful psychological message: if you are three or four guys conspiring to carry out terrorist acts in the New York area, one of you is likely to be an informant.”

    But The Nation’s Robert Dreyfuss takes it a step further and questions the plot itself, calling it ‘bogus.’

    “Despite the pompous statements from Mayor Bloomberg of New York and other politicians, including Representative Peter King, the whole story is bogus,” he argues. “The four losers may have been inclined to violence, and they may have harbored a virulent strain of anti-Semitism. But it seems that the informant whipped up their violent tendencies and their hatred of Jews, cooked up the plot, incited them, arranged their purchase of weapons, and then had them busted.”

    Zachary Roth agrees: “It’s not clear whether these men would have carried out any terror plot without encouragement and material support from an FBI informant,” he says on TPMMuckracker.

    Still, the real mistake in all of this was plotting against New York City, because it is most prepared to deal with such attacks, writes Bobby Ghosh in Time Magazine.

    “Because of New York’s superior resources, authorities were able to take more time months, as it turns out using intensive surveillance to map out the full details of the plot and to see if the plotters had connections to other domestic or international groups.”

    By on May 22, 2009, 3:37 pm
    In category: Civil Rights,Crime & Safety | 2 Comments »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    May 22nd, 2009

  • MTA Analyses That Should But Wont Happen
    (Room Eight)
  • The MTAs Pension and Benefits Problems
    (Second Ave. Sags)
  • Highway Leverage
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • Richard Aborn for Manhattan District Attorney
    (The Nation)
  • Ninety Years of Racial Demographic Maps
    (Social Explorer via Digital Urban)
  • Fewer Airports Could Mean Less Air Congestion
    (Feakonomics via Planetizen)
  • More Area Hyperlocal News Sites Coming Soon
    (paidContent via NYConvergence)
  • A One-Time Cure for the Summertime Job Blues
    (IBO Weblog)
  • Senate Cities Committee Uses Markup Process
    (ReformNY)
  • By on May 22, 2009, 3:20 pm
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    PBS on New York Transportation
    May 21st, 2009

    As part of its series on infrastructure problems nationwide, PBS yesterday aired a documentary called “Road to the Future.” This program covers urban transportation, and its fourth part focused on New York City. The segment discusses Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan’s efforts at opening up the streets to more than cars, Bloomberg’s congestion pricing plan, and the effects of Robert Moses on neighborhoods of color, particularly the South Bronx. As part of the Web feature, you can also read an analysis of the congestion pricing plan, view an extended interview with Sadik-Khan and read a post about federal stimulus funds and transportation projects in New York.

    By on May 21, 2009, 4:00 pm
    In category: Transportation | 2 Comments »

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    Weekly Web Wrap
    May 15th, 2009

  • Bloomberg’s Misguided Shelter Rent Policy
    (Coalition for the Homeless Blog)
  • City has $300,000 to Look into Streetcars
    (The Transport Politic)
  • Meet the 1,400 Jobless Teachers Who Still Get Paid
    (The New Republic)
  • If Bloomberg Wants to Buy the Election, Let Him Really Pay for It
    (The Indypendent)
  • Times Considering Two Paid Web Options
    (Editor & Publisher)
  • Swine Flu Highlights Need for Paid Sick Days
    (Manhattan Borough President’s Blog)
  • Elliot Sander a Victim of Politics
    (Regional Plan Association)
  • The Saga of Khalil Gibran Academy
    (Rethinking Schools)
  • Williamsburg Waterfront Rezoning Four Years Old This Week
    (Brooklyn 11211 via Brownstoner)
  • The World’s Largest Refuse Heap: a Beacon of Sustainability
    (I (Heart) Public Space)
  • The 33rd District Council Forum
    (Only the Blog Knows Brooklyn)
  • School Spending ‘Restraint’ is All Relative
    (NY Fiscal Watch)
  • A Review of the City’s Plan for WiFi in Parks
    (NYCwireless)
  • By on May 15, 2009, 2:56 pm
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    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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