Vinegar Hill

City pushes ahead with controversial plan for homeless shelter in Carroll Gardens

More than 1,000 residents of Carroll Gardens have signed a petition against a homeless shelter for 170 single men planned for their neighborhood, while officials from Community Board 6 say they are shocked that the city has ignored every one of their objections to the plan.


Futuristic automatic pay toilet coming to Downtown Brooklyn

A “cutting-edge” automatic public toilet (APT) is coming to Downtown Brooklyn.

The box-shaped automatic john, to be installed on Tillary Street outside of Cadman Plaza Park, will cost 25 cents for a 15-minute session. The metallic unit is produced by Cemusa, the same company that sells advertisements on New York City’s bus stands and news kiosks.


Protection of witness not a valid reason to revoke defendant’s bail, judge rules

The District Attorney’s office is not permitted to revoke a defendant’s bail on the sole grounds that it is protecting a trial witness, a Brooklyn Criminal Court judge ruled this month.

Joshua Sanchez was arrested in July and was released on bail pending trial. An order of protection was issued against Sanchez as a condition of his bail, preventing him contacting a trial witness. The witness told a social worker that Sanchez had been calling and harassing her in violation of her protection order.


Watchtower Tunnels: Mysterious, lingering remnants of a ministerial Heights presence

The Watchtower tunnels are for real – and the city collects thousands of dollars each year for their use, Department of Finance records reveal.

The underground pedestrian passageways connecting the Brooklyn Heights headquarters buildings of the Jehovah's Witnesses are a long-standing subject of speculation among neighborhood residents who aren't members of the religious organization.


Brooklyn swimming pool to double as skating rink

 Now that summer is over, a Brooklyn swimming pool will be put to a new use: An ice skating rink.

The rink at McCarren Park Pool will open on Nov. 15. It's located on the Greenpoint-Williamsburg border.

The New York Times reports that it will be northern Brooklyn's first ice-skating rink on parks land, and only a handful in the borough.

The rink also will have a gift market and food carts.

It can accommodate about 300 skaters but is not large enough for hockey league play.


City Parks Foundations's "Youth Made Media" program offers Brooklyn teens free film production and new media skills

Brooklyn teenagers learn to use software to create movies, documentaries and narratives through Youth Made Media (YM2), a program of the nonprofit City Parks Foundation that offers young people, ages 13 to 19 from low-income communities, a structured learning experience in video and audio production, media literacy, new media, academic support and life skills training. Teens master valuable technology skills, gaining knowledge in a broad range of standard and specialized industry software, and explore careers and workplaces.


Participatory budgeting comes to Sunset Park, Red Hook

Hey, residents of Sunset Park and Red Hook, think you can do a better job of spending taxpayer money than the city does? Here’s your chance!

The city’s Participatory Budgeting program is coming to the 38th Council District, giving residents a chance to decide how $2 million in funds earmarked for neighborhood improvement projects should be spent. The district, represented by Councilwoman Sara Gonzalez, covers Sunset Park and Red Hook.


New NY-centric novel to launch in Brooklyn

Odd-job queen Starshine Hart is about to go on somebody else’s perfect date. At 29, the usually carefree Starshine has realized that it is easier to start sleeping with a man than to stop. Her lovers include one of the last underground members of the Weathermen, and the dilettante heir to a lawn chair magnate. Both men have staked their romantic future on her. Her only respite is her impending dinner with the non-threatening but unattractive tour guide Larry Bloom. But Larry, too, has a stake in her future.


SUNY fights back against recent LICH court orders

Last week, a Brooklyn Supreme Court justice issued an order allowing Brooklyn community groups and the New York City Public Advocate to assist in the selection of a new operator for the struggling Long Island College Hospital (LICH). The State University of New York-Downstate (SUNY Downstate), LICH’s present operator, has issued appeals requesting a stay on the appointment of any operator and any other disruptions to LICH’s assets.


Community Links brings troubled young people out of their shells

Community Links, a service of Baltic Street AEH (Advocacy, Employment and Housing), with headquarters at 250 Baltic St. in Cobble Hill, is a kind of “outward bound” for urban youth striving for mental health and a life free of substance abuse.

Not that its clients pitch tents in Prospect Park for nature therapy. Rather the program has three reasons why it’s heading in the right direction.



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