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Around Brooklyn: Two-thirds of NYC COVID deaths from Brooklyn, Queens

January 27, 2021 Brooklyn Eagle Staff
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Two-thirds of NYC COVID deaths from Brooklyn, Queens

During a seven-day period between Jan. 15 and Jan. 20, of the approximately 352 New York City residents who died due to COVID-19, 238 were from Brooklyn and Queens, according to published reports. The two boroughs made up 67.6 percent of all fatalities from COVID-19 in New York City during this period. Experts say the high number of deaths reflect a post-holiday surge, since many people celebrated Christmas and New Year’s with friends. Even so, death levels in the city are well below those during last March and April.

Townhouses dominate Brooklyn luxury market

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Townhouses remain the mainstay of Brooklyn’s luxury real estate market. There were 18 contracts signed for homes priced $2 million and above in the borough last week, Compass’ report said. The total value of these contracts was $54,9 million, down from $83 million the previous week. The most expensive deal was for a 1900-era townhouse at 6 Strong Place in Cobble Hill, at $8.45 million. The second priciest was for an 1899 brownstone at 371 Clinton St. in Carroll Gardens, at approximately $4.5 million, according to The Real Deal.

Affordable lottery in Sheepshead Bay

An affordable housing lottery is open for a three-story residential building at 2655 East 23rd St. in Sheepshead Bay. The building, designed by Design Studio Associates NY, will have 11 units. Four units, ranging in eligible income from $61,715 to $133,120, are available on NYC Housing Connect. The building has balconies attached to the apartments, inside washer-driers and dishwashers, security cameras, gated access, a virtual doorman, energy-efficient appliances and built-in air conditioning, according to New York YIMBY.

Developers seek rooftop pool in Brooklyn Heights

The Landmarks Preservation Commission is set to announce whether developers can move forward to build a new rooftop pool at 124 Columbia Heights in Brooklyn Heights. The 10-story building is within the Brooklyn Heights Historic District and once served as a Jehovah’s Witness dormitory building, The building was purchased in 2016 by Vincent Viola, the founder and CEO of Virtu Financial, who filed plans to convert the building to condo use. New renderings from HS2 architecture show a new rooftop pool and a surrounding outdoor-space terrace area, which would require the installation of an elevator for mobility-impaired residents, according to New York YIMBY. 

Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein calls for safety on the streets

Assemblyman Simcha Eichenstein (D-Borough Park, Midwood) wrote a letter to the NYC Department of Transportation Acting Commissioner Margaret Forgione, requesting the installation of a flashing light alert system on the Prospect Expressway. This flashing light signal, half a mile prior to the divide, would alert northbound drivers when the Hamilton Avenue drawbridge is lifted or will soon be lifted. This will allow them to avoid lengthy and unnecessary traffic delays. Motorists approaching the merging point of the Prospect Expressway and the Brooklyn Queens Expressway often make a split-second decision about whether to continue onto the elevated ramp to the left, merging onto the BQE, or take the Hamilton Avenue Exit, heading toward a drawbridge that is frequently lifted, leading to extensive traffic delays. About 153,000 vehicles traverse the BQE daily, making it one of the busiest roadways in the country. 

State Sen. Simcha Felder named to more committees

State Sen. Simcha Felder (D-Borough Park, Midwood)  has been appointed to committees that include areas of longtime advocacy and local community interest. Those include: NYC Education; Aging; Mental Health; Disabilities; and Social Services committees. “These committees represent issues of major interest to the people in the 17th Senate District,” said Felder. “Seniors, Students and Individuals with Special Needs are among the hardest hit by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and I look forward to working with my colleagues to provide the help and support they deserve.”

Gucci-North Face pop-up in Williamsburg

Newmark, a commercial real estate brokerage, recently signed a pop-up collaboration between Gucci and North Face at 134 North 6th St. in Williamsburg. The 4,000-square-foot pop-up is in the former North Face retail space. The new collaborative retail pop-up will be open until at least Feb. 14. “One area of the retail sector we’re seeing bounce back since the onset of the pandemic has been the luxury market,” said Newmark Vice Chairman Ariel Schuster. Other notable retailers that have recently opened in the area include Warby Parker, Buck Mason, Everlane, D.S. & Durga, Madewell’s first men’s location and Lululemon.  

Participatory budgeting in Brooklyn Heights, Downtown, Williamsburg

Participatory budgeting in City Council District 33 (Brooklyn Heights-Downtown-Williamsburg) is back, and the deadline for idea submissions has been extended to Jan. 29. Councilmembers Stephen Levin (from that district), Brad Lander and Carlos Menchaca are the only councilmembers offering participatory budgeting this year. Because of the coronavirus, they will only be funding expense, as opposed to capital, projects. Voting this year will take place between April 5 and April 14. Last year, residents voted for a NYCHA gardening project, electric parks equipment, circus workshops for middle-school students and tree maintenance materials, according to Community Board 2.

Woman caught breaking into school

Cops are seeking to catch up with a woman who broke into the Beis Yaakov Academy, an Orthodox Jewish religious school in Midwood, on Jan. 4 and took off with a set of janitor’s keys. The woman gained access to the school by breaking into a back door, according to police. Video released by the NYPD reveals that the perp is a white woman, clad in a definitely un-Orthodox outfit of a black top and jeans, with shoulder-length hair. Beis Yaakov is an all-girls’ school and has 874 students in grades pre-K through 12, according to the New York Post.

Brooklyn rapper faces gun charges after traffic stop

According to court records, 22-year-old Brooklyn rapper Sheff G was arrested on Tuesday during a traffic stop in East Flatbush. Police say he was pulled over after he was seen driving recklessly and without a license plate on East 42nd Street Cops then searched the vehicle and found a loaded .45-caliber Glock. Sheff, whose legal name is Michael Williams, was taken into custody and charged with reckless driving, a license-plate display violation and criminal possession of a weapon, according to Complex. Sheff G was one of five artists whose sets were pulled from the Rolling Loud show in 2019 at the request of the NYPD, which warned festival organizers that “if these individuals are allowed to perform, there will be a higher risk of violence.”

Man gropes woman, then attacks her

Police are searching for a man who groped a woman on a city bus in Crown Heights, then attacked her when she confronted him. The incident happened on Jan. 13 around 3:30 p.m., when the suspect rubbed a woman’s thigh and grabbed her buttocks on the B15 bus. The woman confronted the suspect, who got off the bus at Bergen Street and Utica Avenue police said. After she got off the bus, the same man confronted her, picked up a glass bottle and hurled it at her, according to PIX11. 

Couple arrested in man’s fatal strangulation

A man and a woman face murder charges in the strangulation of a Crown Heights disabled man who was found dead in his apartment with his hands and feet bound. Malcolm Holder’s caretaker found him face down on the floor of his living room on Friday morning with his hands tied behind his back and his ankles bound together, police said. Police arrested Amanda Sylvester, 35, and Sean Idlet, 49, and charged them with murder in what police believe was a robbery. Family members believe Holder knew his attackers, since there was no forced entry. Holder suffered from traumatic brain injury, but was able to work part-time at Home Depot, according to the Daily News.

Compiled by Raanan Geberer. 

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