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Saturday, March 22, 2008

This Coke costs $5!

Clinton Hill: They don’t call it “The Five Spot” for nothing — because this otherwise reasonably priced Myrtle Avenue soul-food restaurant is now charging $5 for a soda. Comments (11).

Judges fighting for free parking

Downtown: A group of Brooklyn judges may sue the city to preserve its parking privileges in a park next to Borough Hall, claiming that the removal of 20 or so spaces will endanger the judges’ safety because the nearest city-owned garage is two blocks away. Comments (6).

Raise a glass to (and of) Obama

Politics: Some polls show that Barack Obama’s campaign may by losing momentum — but Mr. Gallup and Mr. Zogby might want to drop by a Fourth Avenue bar, where the nation’s first Barack Obama ale is selling as fast as bartenders can pour it. Comment.

Big problems at back office

Downtown: Tremors from the implosion of Bear Stearns are being felt all over the world — and as close as Jay Street in Downtown Brooklyn. Comment.

All drawn out

Cartoon: Our artist’s take on the issues of the day! Comment.

Washington Park redux: J.J. Byrne Park name change marches ahead

Park Slope: The rush to un-rename one of Brooklyn’s most historically significant blocks moved forward last week when Community Board 6 voted to change the name of Park Slope’s J.J. Byrne Park back to Washington Park, its original name. Comments (4).

Coney Island opens!

Coney Island: The weather was still gloomy, but Coney Island’s Astroland and Wonder Wheel parks opened on Sunday. Here are our exclusive pictures. Comments (1).

The Latest Development News

Deconstruction: Pier clearing begins for ‘Park’

Bridge ‘Park’: Demolition began — for real, this time — at the proposed “Brooklyn Bridge Park” last week, even as opponents went to court to battle the housing and open space development. Comments (2).

The ‘historic’ Gowanus Canal

Gowanus: The very thing that turned the Gowanus Canal from a fresh, oyster-filled creek into an oily “Lavender Lake” may be the thing that prevents it from going back to the good old days. Comments (2).

Gowanus cleaners ready for work

Gowanus: Disgraced former Gov. Eliot Spitzer at least did one good thing before sending himself into the dustbin of history — he approved a grant to identify toxic brownfields around the Gowanus Canal just days before revelations about his sexcapades caused his downfall. Comments (1).

Con-Ed con-dos?

Williamsburg–Greenpoint Waterfront: Sudden construction activity in a long-dormant Con Ed power plant on Kent Avenue set off immediate alarms in a neighborhood antsy about the arrival of more luxury condo towers. Comment.

‘Field’ of dreams

Music: Lee Greenfeld, an owner of the Brooklyn Heights rock club Magnetic Field, was in Austin, Texas for South by Southwest last week — managing bands that were playing the music festival — but for the first time in five years, he wasn’t looking for acts to bring back to Atlantic Avenue. Comments (4).

Yards foes to picket Ratner

Atlantic Yards: Atlantic Yards opponents — some of them Brooklyn Museum members — will picket the Museum’s April 3 gala in protest of the institution’s decision to honor controversial developer Bruce Ratner. Comment.

Pols not in any rush to vote ‘yes’ on congestion pricing

Politics: Mayor Bloomberg’s ambitious and controversial plan to charge drivers $8 to enter Manhattan’s central business district will come to a vote early next month in the City Council, where it faces a very bumpy road, according to our survey of all 17 Brooklyn councilmembers. If the vote was today, Brooklyn would vote 8–1 against the plan (with six undecideds and two councilmembers too busy to return our calls). Comments (5).

Your family

It’s a crowded house with our rockers

Smartmom: Smartmom has a full house, thanks to all of Teen Spirit’s rocker pals sleeping over all the time. Comments (1).

Family Calendar

Parenting: All the action for you and your kids! Comment.

A basket case

GO Brooklyn has gone hunting for Easter basket ingredients and has returned with a treasure trove of delicious last-minute ideas to thrill the kids — or even the host of your holiday celebration. Comments (1).

Like a prayer

Nightlife: Most Boerum Hill residents would be furious if a nightclub moved onto their block. For Caio and Kristine Dunson, though, Deity couldn’t be close enough; so in January they opened the two-floor lounge right beneath their apartment in a building that formerly housed a synagogue. Comment.

Other Voices

Three-peat! Kuntzman nabs another honor

After piloting The Brooklyn Paper to the “Newspaper of the Year” honors from the Suburban Newspapers of America last year and winning the group’s “Editor of the Year” award this year, our own grizzled leader, Gersh Kuntzman, has won the same association’s “Best Column Writing” award. Comments (1).

He’s the new Weatherman: Quirky Slope storm chaser breaks silence about hobby

Brooklyn Angle: Our columnist gets the first interview with the keeper of the “Park Slope weather” Web site — the Internet’s biggest hit since the Obama girl. Comments (2).

Judges out of order

Editorial: The Parks Department has moved to evict a few dozen judges from parking in Columbus Park — and The Paper cheers. Comments (1).

Readers go batty over our dog adoption story

Letters: The mailbag is filled — as always. Comment.

Whine connoisseurs

Williamsburg: Williamsburg and Greenpoint residents are the biggest complainers in the borough, new statistics show — and the data has locals wondering who is doing all the whining. Comments (3).

Big flavor

Dining: Bay Ridge’s Austin’s Steakhouse offers rich slabs of beef in a sophisticated setting. Comments (2).

Fightin’ words

DUMBO: As the war in Iraq reaches the five-year mark, journalists and presidential candidates have been talking about it endlessly, but according to Lou Reed, Moby and Laurie Anderson, not nearly enough is being said. Comments (1).

Coney Isle’s roller girl

Bay Ridge: Wheels — whether a bike, a car or the Wonder Wheel — have always made a trip to Coney Island a bit more exciting. And beginning on March 22, that tradition will get even stronger when Lola Staar’s Dreamland Roller Rink, a retro roller rink sponsored by Glamour magazine and Tommy Hilfiger, opens. Comments (3).

Stop the war

Politics: Brooklynites marked the fifth anniversary of the war in Iraq with a damp protest rally on Wednesday. Comment.

Brooklyn on a budget

Dining: Borough President Marty Markowitz kicked off Brooklyn’s restaurant week with a startling revelation to his wife, Jamie: He has secret trysts at the Downtown Atlantic restaurant, where baker Fran Sippel dishes up what he can’t have at home. Comment.

Heights church is the scene of this crime

Downtown: A woman’s wallet was stolen inside of a Monroe Place church on March 12. Plus all the other crime news from Downtown, Brooklyn Heights, DUMBO and Boerum Hill’s 84th Precinct. Comment.

CAUGHT! Mugger gets bag, but is collared within minutes

Park Slope: A thief who mugged a woman after putting her in a headlock early on March 15 was quickly arrested by cops who drove the victim around the neighborhood after the crime. Comment.

SLASHED! Robbers were using the big blades last week

Williamsburg: At least four robbers used blades this week to intimidate their victims and make off with their cash. Comment.

Beach party

Art: Barbecue-happy Brooklynites aren’t the only ones getting their backyard ready for summer. Over on Bond Street, photographer Robert DiScalfani has renovated the patio — as well as two floors of a 100-year-old house — that, on March 27, will open to the public as the Bond Street Gallery. Comment.

Berry bad

Williamsburg: Two gunmen ripped off a Berry Street liquor store. Plus all the other crime news from Williamsburg and Greenpoint’s 94th Precinct Comment.

Burgs in the hood

Prospect Heights: Burglars struck two apartments within a one-block radius in three days this week. Plus all the other crime from Prospect Heights’ 77th Precinct. Comment.

Piggy bank rob

Williamsburg: Burglars broke into a Stagg Street apartment, snatching everything they could grab — even the piggy bank on March 12. Plus all the other crime news from Williamsburg and Bushwick’s 90th Precinct. Comment.

Martha Mug

Park Slope: One of Martha Stewart’s co-workers gets mugged — plus all the other crime news from Park Slope’s 78th Precinct. Comments (1).

Fake cops

Fort Greene: Two more police impersonators struck on March 14, showing up at a St. James Place apartment with a “warrant,” pulling out firearms, handcuffing their victim, and walking off with $2,000 worth of his belongings. Plus the rest of the crime news from Fort Greene and Clinton Hill’s 88th Precinct. Comment.

Clean and green for a cause

Advertorial: CleanGreenMaids, a premier environmentally sound professional cleaning service, has joined forces with the Cleaning For A Reason Foundation to offer free cleaning services to women undergoing cancer treatments. Comment.

Going green, getting green

Advertorial: Aviator Sports’s green energy initiative netted the Floyd Bennett Field recreation center grants totalling $887,000 from New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) and National Grid (formerly KeySpan). Comment.

‘Meet & greet’ at HSBC

Advertorial: The HSBC branch on Montague Street near Court Street, in Brooklyn Heights, hosted a catered “meet and greet” evening for customers to network with each other, meet some of the new staff at the branch and welcome back Bernadette Bloch. Comment.

He Wood if he could

Clinton Hill: Artist Arthur Wood said the city is holding his hand-built home Broken Angel “hostage” for $70,000 in fines that the Buildings Department says he owes. Comments (1).

Perfectly Polished boutique

Advertorial: Perfectly Polished is not your average nail salon — it’s a great party and relaxation spot, with a happy hour! Comments (6).

Polish Easter

TV: Carroll Gardens resident Terry Corrao knows her own family’s dining traditions — on Christmas Eve she makes the classic Italian seven-course fish feast — but it’s the Easter rituals of Greenpoint’s Polish enclave that she was truly hungering to learn about. Comment.

A Park Slope homesteader

PS … I Love You: Tip O’Neill used to say that all politics is local. Who knew it extended to food? Comment.

Obsessed with ‘Love’

Art: There’s one feminist in Brooklyn who isn’t stumping for Hillary. Ghada Amer, a well-known artist whose first retrospective in the United States opened at the Brooklyn Museum on Feb. 16, focuses on the roles of women in her artwork, but thinks Mrs. Clinton has already bungled her job. Comment.

Join the club

Nightlife: Raul Castro had been president of Cuba for three days before Nicole Davis named a drink after him. Made with 10 Cane rum and whiskey-soaked bitters, the “Raul Libre” was one of the two drinks being served on Feb. 27 when Davis, who runs the BrooklynBased.net Web site, kicked off “The Cocktail Club,” a monthly mixer aimed at getting her readers away from their computers and in front of one another. Comment.

Heights ‘trashes’ Slope

Park Slope: Brooklyn Heights wants to keep its trash trucks on the edge of Park Slope. Comment.

What you’re looking for: Fort Greene retail survey shows big needs

Fort Greene: Fort Greene needs a bookstore, a baker and the modern equivalent of a candlestick-maker: a hardware store. That’s a central finding of the Fort Greene Retail Survey. Comment.

Civic Calendar

All the important meetings you should be going to. Comment.

Free for all!

In the spirit of encouraging a free exchange of ideas, The Brooklyn Paper makes this space available to our readers. Comment.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Ratner kills Miss Brooklyn, most of Atlantic Yards

Atlantic Yards: Bruce Ratner’s controversial Atlantic Yards project — which envisioned 16 skyscrapers, eight acres of open space, more than 2,250 units of below-market-rate housing, new top-of-the-line office space and a publicly financed basketball arena at the center — now consists of little more than the arena and two scaled-back residential buildings, the developer told the New York Times today. Comments (5).

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