Holiday Redux: Tenants at Smith Houses Are Without Gas Service Once Again

Photo via Alfred E. Smith Houses Facebook page.

It’s a holiday tradition the residents of the Alfred E. Smith Houses could definitely do without.   Once again people who live in the public housing complex near the Brooklyn Bridge are having to made do without gas service.  It’s at least the fifth substantial outage in the past three years.  The problems have a way of occurring during the holidays, when the weather turns cold and people are cooking more family meals than normal.

This time, we’re told 32 apartments at 182 South Street are impacted.  The gas has been out most of this month.  Service is not expected to be restored until a week from Thursday or Friday.  As in the past, NYCHA has handed out hot plates so tenants can at least use their kitchens.

Repairs Begin at Basketball City; Armin Van Buuren New Year’s Eve Show Still On

Workers began replacing the floors at Basketball City this week.

Last week we noted that Basketball City on Pier 36 sustained a lot of damage during Hurricane Sandy.  The wood floors covering seven courts inside the recreational facility, which just opened this past summer, were completely ruined.  This week we stopped by to check out the progress of repairs and to talk with Basketball City owner Bruce Radler.

The good news, he said, is that the building is in good shape structurally.  The new floors are being shipped in batches during the next few weeks.  It will probably be mid-January before the job is complete.  A couple of transformers were also lost in the storm, and Verizon has still not been able to restore regular phone service.

Morning Reads: Chinatown Bus Safety, Bowery Mission Grant, The Year of Bowien

  • After the acquittal of a Chinatown bus driver, a look at proposals to make the largely unregulated industry safer (WNYC).
  • Sheldon Silver: the governor knows he’s not running a dictatorship (Capital New York).
  • The United Way awards a grant to the Bowery Mission for post-Sandy repairs (NY1).
  • Pete Wells says Royal Seafood on Mott Street serves “food that is often very close to Cantonese cuisine, the original flavor of Chinatown, with enough modern Hong Kong flourishes to let you know that it’s 2012.” (NYT)
  • Is it time to get over Mission Chinese’s Danny Bowien? One writer says yes (Village Voice).
  • A look at Two-Bits, the new retro arcade on Essex Street (Beta Beat).
  • 18-year old UK music prodigy Jake Bugg at the Slipper Room (Brooklyn Vegan).


Madison-Jackson Will Now Be a Luxury Rental Building

371 Madison Street. Photo: Prudential Douglas Elliman.

When last we spoke with Michael Bolla, real estate agent to the stars, he had pulled the Madison Jackson condo conversion from the market after receiving “multiple lucrative offers” from investors who wanted to buy the whole building.  The former P.S. 12 building at 371 Madison Street is owned by Chinatown banker Thomas Sung.  Bolla had only been selling apartments for a few weeks when the high profile marketing campaign was put on hold last summer.  Now there’s a change of course, once again.  The Observer reports:

Last week, Mr. Bolla said that the deal (to sell the building)  was nearly closed, but a few days later a source told The Observer that it had fallen apart after the Sungs rejected an offer in the mid-$60 million range.  On Monday morning, Mr. Bolla called to tell us that Mr. Sung had decided to keep the building. He and Mr. Sung had agreed to turn Madison Jackson into luxury rentals, which he would start selling at the beginning of the year.

The article is an entertaining read.  You can see the full thing here.


Good Morning!

Orchard Street, looking uptown.

Partly cloudy today with a high of 45.

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