Illegal home conversion fears spread beyond southwest Brooklyn

Concerns over illegal home conversions, which have reached a fever pitch in communities like Bay Ridge and Dyker Heights, are showing signs of spreading beyond southwest Brooklyn.

On March 8, Councilmember Jumaane D. Williams (D-Flatbush), chairman of the council’s Housing and Buildings Committee, joined Councilmember Vincent Gentile (D-Bay Ridge-Dyker Heights-Bensonhurst) and Borough President Eric Adams at a press conference outside a church on Flatbush Avenue to discuss legislation they are co-sponsoring to combat illegal home conversions.


Bay Ridge Historical Society looks at Ovington Village

The Bay Ridge Historical Society is getting ready for spring by planning an ambitious agenda of programs highlighting not only Bay Ridge’s past, but the history of Brooklyn Heights as well.

Society President Andrew Gounardes and his members meet on the third Wednesday of the month at the Shore Hill Neighborhood Center, between the East and West Buildings of the Shore Hill Residence, at 9000 Shore Road. The meetings, which are free and open to the public, begin at 7:30 p.m.


Artists use store windows as canvasses in Bay Ridge show

Store windows on Fifth Avenue in Bay Ridge will become mini-art galleries in May, thanks to a unique program designed to bring together art, commerce and the community.

The Sixth Annual Fifth Avenue Storefront Art Walk will take place starting May 16 in stores on Fifth Avenue between 68th and 84th streets.


Student essay contest to focus on bullying

State Sen. Marty Golden sponsors an essay contest for students in his senate district every year but he decided that a change of pace was needed this time around.

So instead of asking students to write essays with the theme “If I were state senator for a day I would…” Golden (R-C-Bay Ridge-Southwest Brooklyn) is changing the theme to reflect a serious issue going on in schools today.

The essay contest will deal with bullying.

The idea is to raise awareness regarding the wrongs of bullying in schools and in the community, Golden said.


City to investigate Bay Ridge’s troubled Prince Hotel

A Bay Ridge hotel that has long been the target of complaints from local residents is now on the de Blasio Administration’s radar.

The Mayor’s Office of Special Enforcement is going to be taking a close look at the Prince Hotel at 315 93rd St., according to Councilmember Vincent Gentile’s office and Community Board 10 officials.

It’s too early to tell what the outcome of the probe will be, but Bay Ridge officials said they’re pleased the city is finally zeroing in on the place.


Verrazano Bridge repair work brings lane closure until 2017

Motorists are facing a lane closure, a detour and other traffic headaches driving on the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge now that a major reconstruction project has begun on the span.

The first phase of a massive, $235.7 million project to replace the deck on the upper level of the bridge began on March 7. In addition to replacing the deck, contractors will also be installing a permanent Bus/HOV lane on the upper level of the bridge, according to the Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA).


Xaverian beats Cardinal Hayes, advances to semifinals

The Xaverian Clippers picked up a big win when they beat Cardinal Hayes 56-54 during the Catholic High School Athletic League AA intersectional quarterfinals at Fordham University on Sunday.


Bay Ridge luncheon raises money for scholarships

Hundreds of people turned out at the Bay Ridge Manor catering hall on Sunday to enjoy lunch, enter a raffle to win prizes and raise money for a scholarship fund for local students.

The administrators of the Kassenbrock Brothers Memorial Scholarship Fund held their annual luncheon on March 8, attracting a large crowd of local residents eager to help the organization raise money to be able to continue its 42-year-old tradition of awarding scholarships to college-bound high school seniors.


Poly Prep senior wins Gold Key Award in 2015 Scholastic Art & Writing competition

Poly Prep artist and Rhode Island School of Design-bound senior Rowan McAllister (’15) won a Gold Key Award for a self-portrait in the photography category of the 2015 Scholastic Art and Writing Awards competition.

This year, in the New York region, the competition received a record 11,000-plus submissions in all categories, which makes McAllister’s award all the more notable.

McAllister also won six honorable mentions in the drawing and illustration category.


Xaverian High School is going co-ed

Xaverian High School, a Catholic high school in Bay Ridge that has been an all-male bastion in grades nine through 12 since it was founded during the Eisenhower Administration, is going co-ed.

The school will begin accepting female students in the fall of 2016, officials announced. The Class of 2020 will have the first females in the graduating class.



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