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The "Are You 212 NYC?" Edition
If New York bathrooms are only the twelfth worst in the nation, what the heck is going on with these other eleven states?
For the people who’ve been complaining about a lack of snow in 2023, are you happy now?
• The LIRR tracks at Grand Central are officially open. (Aaron Ginsburg for 6sqft)
• Governor Hochul wants to increase the state’s cigarette tax by $1 to $5.35 and expand the state's ban on flavored vape products to any tobacco products, which would effectively ban menthol cigarettes. The plan would cut youth smoking by an estimated 9%, but criticism of the ban notes it would unevenly target people of color. (Jon Campbell for Gothamist)
• Governor Hochul's state budget includes moving half a billion dollars from Access-A-Ride to the city's bidget. Mayor Adams calls the additional budget unfair and unsustainable. (Jose Martinez for The City)
• Hell Gate, as usual, asks the important questions: Will Flaco, the escaped owl, fuck? (Scott Heins for Hell Gate)
• New York public bathrooms are the twelfth worst in the country, which really makes you question what the hell if going on with the other 11 states. (Matt Troutman for Patch)
• What's the difference between the NYPD commissioner and the deputy mayor for public safety? According to the unindicted co-conspirator in a federal corruption case/deputy mayor for public safety, "that's not a question." (Michelle Bocanegra for Gothamist)
• Podcast: The Atlas Obscura Podcast visits Newtown Creek. (Atlas Obscura)
• The city's Department of Parks and Recreation is preparing for a trial run of prefabricated, kiosk-like bathrooms that cost a fraction of the multimillion-dollar price tag for building traditional restrooms. (Yoav Gonen for The City)
• Why has Brooklyn become the go-to court for prosecuting Mexican drug lords? (Malcolm Beith for Brooklyn Magazine)
• The Jonas Brothers are headed to Broadway. (Anna Rahmanan for Time Out)
• Do you know where Greenwich Village starts are stops? The long-time quest to map Greenwich Village. (Susan Behrends Valenzuela for Washington Square News)
• New York's hottest commodity is a 212 area code phone number. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist)
• Brooklyn, Queens, and Manhattan are in the top five smallest apartments in the country. Number one is Seattle. (Anna Rahmanan for Time Out)
• Bryant Park used to be a cemetery and eleven other secrets in Bryant Park's history. (Untapped New York)
• The five best dishes at the updated Canal Street Market. (Robert Sietsema for Eater)
• Where to find the best pancakes in NYC. (Eater)
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Featured City Pet: Papi!
Thanks to Briefly Buddy Josh for sending a photo of today’s featured pet, Papi! Papi is giving big “you wanted snow?” vibes. Send in pics of your furry friends to firstname.lastname@example.org to be featured.