The Trump (Source: Google Maps)

Luna Park Houses (Source: Google Maps)

A 93-year-old survivor of the Holocaust died Monday morning after a fire ripped through his 15th floor apartment.

Lipa Briks, who fled Poland in the 1930s, was pulled unconscious from his burning apartment at the Luna Park complex at 2954 West 8th Street shortly after 1:15 a.m.

He was taken to Coney Island Hospital, where he was pronounced dead.

He lived alone inside the apartment.

Fire marshals said yesterday that the blaze was caused by faulty electrical wiring.

“He escaped the Nazis, he escaped the Soviet army, he escaped an anti-Semitic Polish regime, but he couldn’t escape the fire,” Briks’ friend and neighbor Michael Bar told the Daily News. “He was the only one in his very large family to survive the Holocaust.”

Clarification: The original version of this article said the victim was taken to Coney Island Hospital, where he died. To clarify, he was dead on arrival and was pronounced so at the hospital. The article has been amended to reflect this.

This photo makes me think of Eddie Eisenberg. While there is no documented proof that people look down on us after they conclude the final phase of their life here on Earth, I like to think it means that somewhere, in another realm, Eddie is happily and inimitably shpatzeering about in his new cosmic community.

I really miss him a lot.

Photo by George Burshteyn

Morning Mug is our daily showcase of photographs from our readers. If you have a photograph that you’d like to see featured, send them to photos@sheepsheadbites.com.

Photo by Erica Sherman

Four months after taking office, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced over the weekend that he is renewing the push to help victims of Superstorm Sandy, including reallocating $100 million in funds specifically targeted to residential rebuilding.

The mayor also repeated his vow to cut through the red tape that has long plagued recovery efforts, and has made three appointments he says will be key in moving the efforts along.

The New York Times reports:

Bill Goldstein, most recently the executive vice president of the MTA Capital Construction Company, will be a senior adviser to the mayor, overseeing all recovery programs.

Amy Peterson, the president of Nontraditional Employment for Women, which offers training for women in industries like construction, will direct the city’s Housing Recovery Office. Daniel A. Zarrilli, the acting director of the city’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability, will lead the newly formed Office of Recovery and Resiliency.

The $100 million in aid will fill a critical gap. Previous aid money was first distributed to assist poorer hurricane victims deemed “priority one” by the city. Victims labeled “priority two” and “priority three” had been told they would have to wait. Many of these lower-priority homeowners are city employees — police officers, teachers, firefighters — with limited incomes or savings.

This money, the mayor’s office said, will ensure that all homeowners with destroyed homes can build new ones, regardless of the homeowner’s priority level.

The funds are expected to cover the cost of approximately 500 homes.

Additionally, the Wall Street Journal reports that the Housing Recovery office, which oversees the Build it Back program, will have a staffing boost of 35 percent, bringing the total number to more than 100 employees.

The announcement follows headlines critical of the Build it Back program, which has so far failed at distributing any of the $648 million in aid.  As of February, none of the nearly 20,000 single family homes (defined as homes with between one and four residential units) registered for the program have started construction, and only 154 of those registrants have had their awards selected.

However, the city has ramped up the process in recent week. The city’s own Sandy Tracker website, last updated in mid-March, shows that the number of registrants with their awards selected has more than tripled. Although not reflected on the tracker website, de Blasio claims the agency has recently sent out the first batch of reimbursement checks, and that some construction projects are already underway.

Vision ZeroThe Vision Zero initiative to reduce traffic-related fatalities has been met with mixed reviews in car-dependent neighborhoods like those in Southern Brooklyn. Many applaud the city’s intention, but share concerns that it will unfairly penalize drivers.

Now there’s an opportunity to let legislators know how you feel about various elements of the plan, and where they can do better.

There will be a town hall meeting at Brooklyn Borough Hall (209 Joralemon Street) on Tuesday, April 1, at 7 p.m., where Brooklyn residents are invited to discuss the action plan outlining how to eliminate traffic-related fatalities.

Among the initiative’s proposals is an increase in police enforcement for moving violations, implement speed and red-light cameras and reduce the citywide speed limit to 25 miles per hour. The plan also calls for closer scrutiny of accidents that result in critical injuries or death, and to re-engineer street designs to make them safer for pedestrians. You can see a more complete list of the Vision Zero proposals here.

Local pols have pushed for the opportunity to give voice to residents, hoping to collaborate on the implementation of proposals rather than have them handed down from up high.

“Nobody knows the streets in your community better than you do,” said Councilmember Chaim Deutsch in a press release. “This town hall meeting will give residents an opportunity to voice their concerns and speak out on potentially dangerous traffic locations.”

According to his release:

Community members who attend the meeting will be provided the opportunity to point out specific problem locations throughout the borough where they perceive hazards or additional safety concerns to exist. Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams and other city council members representing Brooklyn neighborhoods will also be in attendance.

 

Source: MTAPhotos/Flickr

B LINE

From 9:45 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesday to Friday, Manhattan-bound B trains run local from Sheepshead Bay to Prospect Park.

Q LINE

All times until summer 2014: Coney Island-bound Q trains skip Parkside Av, Beverley Rd, and Cortelyou Rd.

From 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday to Friday, there are no Q trains between 57 St-7 Av and Ditmars Blvd – take the N.

From 9:45 a.m. to 3 p.m., Wednesday to Friday, Coney Island-bound Q trains run express from Newkirk Plaza to Sheephead Bay.

F LINE

From 11:45 p.m. to 5 a.m., Monday to Friday, Coney Island-bound F trains are rerouted via the A from W 4 St to Jay St-MetroTech.

From 12:30 a.m. to 5 a.m., Tuesday to Friday, Manhattan-bound F trains make local stops at 36 St, Steinway St, 46 St, Northern Blvd, and 65 St.

From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, F service operates in two sections:

  1. Between 179 St and Avenue X.
  2. Between Avenue X and Coney Island.
  • To continue your trip, transfer at Avenue X.

From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, Manhattan-bound F trains skip Avenue U.

From 10:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday to Thursday, F trains run every 20 minutes between Avenue X and Coney Island.

Still from surveillance video.

The thieves were captured on surveillance video.

A 9-week-old shih tzu puppy was returned to a Marine Park pet store on Saturday after it was stolen last week.

The puppy was stolen last Tuesday from Puppy Paradise (2082 Flatbush Avenue). The thieves were captured on surveillance video, with one standing watch while the other two went into a private puppy room and grabbed the dog, named Pal.

The shih tzu retailed for $1,000. Owners at the time made a public plea to the pooch plunderers, saying that they would not press charges or ask questions if the dog was returned.

They got their wish Saturday, when someone dropped Pal off in front of the store on Saturday before fleeing the scene, CBS reports.

It remains unclear if the dog was returned as a result of the plea, or if the bandits simply realized how yappy shih tzus can be.

A familiar sight: Next bus please! (Source: afagen/Flickr)

THE COMMUTE: By now you have heard that subway ridership in New York City has reached a 65-year high. Why has nothing has been said about local bus ridership? It is because as subway ridership keeps rising, local bus ridership is on the decline, only stabilizing in recent years.

It is too early to tell if the trend has reversed, or if increasing numbers of riders are choosing the subway but not the bus. Many are willing to walk extra and take indirect subway trips to Downtown Brooklyn to avoid a bus because the train is quicker and more reliable. You are also less likely to encounter a major subway delay than a major bus delay. I believe you have about a 10 percent chance of experiencing a major subway delay of, let’s say, 30 minutes or more. It is more like a 33 percent chance for a major bus delay. You can expect at least a 10-minute bus delay about half the time. Yes, those are my less-than-scientific estimates. Feel free to disagree.

The MTA will acknowledge that subways are quicker and more reliable. They attribute the slowness of buses entirely to traffic and the recent slight increases in bus ridership to Select Bus Service (SBS). They are now pushing SBS at full speed, aiming for seven new routes within the next five years although the jury is still out on the B44 SBS. This link has more of a description of how the new funding will be spent and a link to the source materials is provided at the bottom. The MTA would also have you believe that these SBS routes and a few new local bus routes operating at 30-minute intervals is all the MTA has to do to keep up with future needs.

Continue Reading »

Avenue X and Coney Island Avenue (Source: Google Maps)

Avenue X and Coney Island Avenue (Source: Google Maps)

A man is in critical condition after being hit by a car on Coney Island Avenue and Avenue X early Saturday morning.

The incident happened around 5:15 a.m. According to a passenger of the Toyota Tundra truck that hit the man, the victim ran into the street.

“We were going home. He was running across the street. It happened in a split second … he came out of nowhere running fast,” the passenger told the Daily News. “We were all in shock.”

Intersections along Coney Island Avenue are among the highest incident rates for pedestrian strikes within the 61st Precinct, with the worst intersection being two blocks away at Avenue Z. The NYPD announced earlier this month that they would increase enforcement as part of the citywide Vision Zero initiative.

This is a paid announcement from UFC Gym Brooklyn, located at 16 Brighton 11th Street.

ufc

They say time flies when you’re having fun. Well, we can vouch for that; one year has flown by since we opened our doors in Sheepshead Bay.

Throughout the year we changed brands from LA Boxing to UFC Gym, we added more classes, more equipment, and more trainers. We did all this to get better, to provide better quality and a better experience to our members.  We promise our members results, and results we deliver.  While other places become stale and boring, UFC Gym never stops changing and evolving.

We would like to invite everyone to come out and celebrate this anniversary milestone with us on Saturday, March 29, from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Come check out what so many have been raving about this past year. In our first year we have solidified our reputation as the best fitness option in the area.  Only at UFC Gym Brooklyn do we offer group training sessions that incorporate Mixed Martial Arts training with TRX.  We are the only fitness studio of its kind that offers Trigger Point Boxing, UFC Fit, Daily Ultimate Trainer classes.

  • Special schedule for this Saturday:
    • 9:00 a.m.: MATRX (MMA with TRX)
    • 10:15 a.m.: Kid’s MMA
    • 12:00 p.m.: New Programming Circuit Training
    • 2:00 p.m.: New Programming Circuit Training
  • Great beats with Brooklyn’s best DJs, Deejay Gio and Alex Edge!!!
  • Healthy Food
  • Prizes and Giveaways
  • Free classes
  • Free Personal Training sessions all day
  • Free Fitness Assessments all day
  • Great membership discounts
  • Personal training specials
  • Killer deals on ALL merchandise!

Come join UFC Gym Brooklyn family on Saturday for a great workout and an awesome anniversary party!  Call us at (718) 975-7100 to reserve a spot.

UFC Gym Brooklyn, 16 Brighton 11th Street, (718) 975-7100, brooklyngm@ufcgym.com. Follow UFC Gym on Facebook and Twitter.

The above is a paid announcement by UFC Gym Brooklyn. Sheepshead Bites has not verified the claims made in this advertisement. If you own a business and would like to announce a special offer to tens of thousands of locals, e-mail us at advertising [at] sheepsheadbites [dot] com.

 
Enjoy the weekend, everyone…

Photo by Randy Contello / RandyCPhotography