Lower Manhattan Update 11-5-12

Now that the recovery process has made significant strides, the Downtown Alliance will produce a daily email (instead of twice-a-day) to provide you with all of the updates that could affect your home or office in Lower Manhattan with information from various agencies including New York City, New York State, MTA, Port Authority, Con Ed and more. If you would like to subscribe, please click here.

Remember, you can also get the latest updates and retail openings from Facebook and Twitter.

IMPORTANT LINKS

MAYOR BLOOMBERG BRIEFING 2PM, 11/5/12

94 percent of the city’s schools were open today. Schools reporting attendance so far is that 86.3 percent of students showed up today. That’s about the same as on the Monday before Election Day last year. There are 16 schools that still have emergency shelters in them, by Wedesday those shelters should be moved or will not interfere with school operations.

 

Mass transit is definitely the way to go given that gas supplies in our city remain below-normal. Supply of gasoline continues to increase.  Barges carrying 21 million gallons of gasoline also unloaded at the region’s terminals this weekend, and more coming in. Until the bottleneck clears, lines at the pump probably will remain long. Officers posted at every gas station. Be patient.

115,000 customers still remain without service, down from 145,000 yesterday. Most are in Rockaways, Staten Island, and South Brooklyn.

402 buildings in the NYCHA system lost electricity. 288 NYCHA buildings housing  58,000 people who have power. 114 buildings housing 21,000 people still without electricity.

386 NYCHA buildings were without heat and hot water. Now 212 buildings housing 42,000 people have heat and hot water restored. 174 buildings housing 35,000 people still need heat and hot water.

Designating community restoration directors who are seasoned, high-level managers in administration.

Buses will take people to 6 disaster assistance centers. Volunteers will to go door-to-door urging residents to 15 shelters. More than 200 centers to stay warm during the day.

Continuing to offer food, water, and supplies to New Yorkers without electrical power. Will operate noon to 4 pm.

$15.4 million has come into the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.

Everyone who needs a warm place to live and a roof over his or her head is going to have one.

Appointing Brad Gair, as director of housing recovery operations. His mission will be to develop and implement a comprehensive plan to house New Yorkers displaced by Sandy. He has 20 years of experience in emergency response efforts.  Wasthe highest-ranking federal executive directly involved in 9/11.

Starting at midnight, emergency rules permitting street pick-ups by livery cabs and black cars and multiple fares in them and in taxis will be suspended.

Street cleaning rules remain suspended today as well as on tomorrow. No recycling collection until further notice.

Three-fourths of the City’s parks and playgrounds are open.

 

MAYOR APPOINTS DIRECTOR OF HOUSING RECOVERY OPERATIONS

Mayor Bloomberg appointed a Director of Housing Recovery Operations and named representatives of his administration to serve as Community Recovery Directors. Former FEMA director Brad Gair will oversee the City’s efforts to house all New Yorkers who have been displaced by the storm. As Director of Housing Recovery Operations, he will develop a comprehensive inventory of transitional and temporary housing options and oversee the transition of displaced New Yorkers into temporary housing. He will closely coordinate with federal, state and local authorities.

In addition, the Mayor appointed four Community Recovery Directors who will ensure New Yorkers in the hardest-hit communities have the information they need about services available to them. They will be the primary points of contact for residents, community groups and elected officials and will coordinate with City policy and operations staff to ensure that all community needs are being address comprehensively. All of the Community Recovery Directors are high-level managers in the Administration with experience working with community groups and elected officials:

  • Brooklyn: Nazli Parvizi, Commissioner of the Community Affairs Unit
  • Manhattan and the Bronx: Matthew Mahoney, Associate Commissioner for Intergovernmental Affairs at the Department for Environmental Protection
  • Queens: Diahann Billings-Burford, Chief Service Officer
  • Staten Island: Haeda Mihaltses, Director of Intergovernmental Affairs

SUBWAY STATUS

See latest subway map here: http://alert.mta.info/sites/default/files/pdf/hurricane_recovery_map_bw_Nov5midday_0.pdf.

  • 1 Trains operate between 242nd Street (Bronx) and Chambers Street.
  • 2 Trains operate between 241st Street (Bronx) and the Flatbush Avenue-Brooklyn College Station.
  • 3 Trains operate between Harlem-148th Street and New Lots Avenue.
  • 4 Trains operate between the Woodlawn Station and the Crown Heights-Utica Avenue Station.
  • 5 Trains operate between the Eastchester-Dyre Avenue Station and the Flatbush Avenue-Brooklyn College Station.
  • 6 Trains operate between the Pelham Bay Park Station and the Brooklyn Bridge-City Hall Station.
  • A Trains operate between 168th Street (Manhattan) and Lefferts Blvd.
  • C Trains operate between 145th Street (Manhattan) and the Euclid Avenue Station.
  • E Trains operate between the Jamaica Center-Parsons/Archer Station and the World Trade Center.
  • B Service is suspended.
  • D Trains operate between 205 Street (Bronx) and the Bay Pkwy Station in both directions, with local stops between 125 Street and 59 Street.
  • F Trains operate between 179 Street (Queens) and Avenue X (Brooklyn).
  • M Trains operate between the 71 Avenue-Forest Hills Station and the Metropolitan Avenue Station.
  • G Service is suspended.
  • J Trains operate between Jamaica Center and Essex Street, making all local stops.
  • Z Service is suspended.
  • L Trains operate between Broadway Junction and Rockaway Parkway, making all local stops.
  • N Trains operate between Ditmars Blvd and 59 Street (Brooklyn).
  • Q Trains operate between the Kings Highway Station and the Astoria-Ditmars Boulevard Station.
  • R Trains operate in two sections: between the 71 Avenue-Forest Hills Station and 34 Street-Herald Square, and in Brooklyn between Jay Street-MetroTech and 95th Street.
  • 7 Trains operate between the Times Square-42 Street Station and the Flushing-Main Street Station.
  • The 42nd Street Shuttle Trains operate between Times Square and Grand Central.
  • The Franklin Avenue Shuttle Trains operate between the Franklin Avenue Station and the Prospect Park Station.
  • The Rockaway Park Shuttle Service is suspended.

CON EDISON

As of last night, there were about 198,000 customers still out of power; that is out of approximately 940,000 that were impacted by Hurricane Sandy. Power has been restored to about 80 percent of customers. The remaining outages are comprised of:

  • 5,000 – Manhattan
  • 54,000 – Queens
  • 23,000 – Brooklyn
  • 19,000 – Staten Island
  • 11,000 – Bronx
  • 86,000 – Westchester

The vast majority of those remaining without power should see restoration by next weekend. Yet, there are still 200 large buildings that cannot take power because of internal electrical damage. Con Ed also is prioritizing schools, polling sites, senior centers, and large building restorations.

Significant progress has been made in turning on power throughout the city.  There are now approximately 145,000 customers still without power in the city, down from approximately 750,000.

The City has provided 40 emergency generators to hospitals, nursing homes, public housing developments, and other facilities throughout the city.

Anyone without power who is using candles for light should be extremely careful – do not leave them burning through the night and do not leave them unattended.  The FDNY has responded to six fires started by candles this week.

STEAM SYSTEM

Currently, no one has steam service south of 14th Street. Con Ed cut service to about 550 of its 1,700 steam customers, which represents about 15 miles out of 100 miles of steam mains.

Con Ed is expecting to restore our steam generation station at 14th Street tonight, and this will allow it to generate extra capacity, and work throughout the week to help restore heat to customers.

WARMING SHELTERS

Anyone who needs heat should find warm shelter, whether at City facilities or with a friend or relative.

The City is providing warm shelters. A list of locations is here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/hurricane_shelters.html.

Buses are running to take people to warm shelters if they cannot get their own their own. The bus pickups are listed here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/overnight_shelter.html.

The City also has opened daytime-only warming centers at senior centers in every borough: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/warming_ctr.html.

Those who are using generators in their homes to run their heat should be very careful to avoid carbon monoxide poisoning by never using portable generators indoors, in garages or near open windows.

Early signs of hypothermia include uncontrollable shivering, confusion or sleepiness, slowed or slurred speech, stiffness in arms and legs, poor control over body movements and slow reaction.

FOOD, WATER AND BLANKET DISTRIBUTION INFORMTION

12 distribution sites are set up in the hardest-hit areas of the city – providing food, water, blankets, baby formula, diapers, batteries and more at these sites.  Locations here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/foodandwater.html.

The following items were distributed on Sunday:

  • 600,000 meals to approximately 200,000 residents.
  • 100,000 liters of water.
  • 22,000 blankets.
  • 27,000 bagels.
  • 4500 boxes of diapers.
  • 300 boxes baby wipes.
  • 5,000 batteries and flashlights.
  • 800 toothbrushes with toothpaste.
  • 100 cases of baby formula.
  • 250 case of garbage bags.
  • 1,000 bottles of shampoo and conditioner.
  • 75 cases toilet paper, paper towels and tissues.
  • 500 bottles of hand sanitizer.
  • 500 bottles of hand soap.
  • 500 ear muffs.
  • 400 pairs of gloves.
  • 5,000 hand warmers.

The sites will be open going forward from 12:00 PM to 4:00 PM.

On Sunday alone, 3,700 volunteers coordinated by the City’s volunteer program – NYC Service – and partner agencies distributed door to door and at the 12 food and water distribution centers and worked to clean City parks.

City employees and volunteers are going door-to-door in the hardest-hit areas to reach as many residents as possible who are in need.

They will be kept open for as long as is needed, and no one who shows up for food and water will be turned away.

Each person can take three meals and five bottles of water at these sites.

People should bring their own bags to carry their food and water.

 

DISASTER ASSISTANCE CENTERS

Six centers that provide information about applying for emergency social and economic benefits are open. The list of sites can be found here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/dasc.html.

These facilities are being operated by the City’s Human Resources Administration in cooperation with FEMA. They will be open from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM, seven days/week.

SCHOOLS

Public schools are open. However, 65 schools definitely will not open on Monday. This includes 57 schools that sustained damage from the storm. On Wednesday, the students from these 57 schools will attend class in alternative sites.

Parents can check on the status of their schools by going to www.nyc.gov/schools. Call 311 or texting “nycschools” to 877-877.

In addition, the City is conducting extensive outreach to families, making 1.1 million robo-calls to parents; direct messages from principals and parent coordinators to parents; full page advisories in four of New York City’s newspapers; text messages to parents and families enrolled in the Department of Education’s texting program; and information to television and radio outlets.

Some schools may have power, but not heat so all children should be dressed appropriately for cool weather in the buildings.

96 percent of school buses will be running on Monday morning, though delays in transportation are expected due to the continued cleanup of roads.

A reserve of substitute teachers have been called up to ensure that all classrooms are covered.

CITY MEDICAL SERVICES

Mayor Bloomberg announced today that mobile medical vans staffed with primary care providers who will be able to provide medical care and distribute commonly prescribed drugs are now at several of the City’s Disaster Assistance Service Centers in the Rockaways and Coney Island, as well as two additional high-need locations in the Rockaways.

There is a particular need for pharmaceuticals in the Rockaways because of a limited number of pharmacies still open and able to fulfill prescriptions. Starting tomorrow, the medical vans will also be in Staten Island.

Redfern Houses Playground/  1462 Beach Channel Drive/ Redfern and Beach 12th Street / 10 AM – 5 PM

Walbaums Parking Lot/ 112-15 Beach Channel Drive btw Beach 112th/Beach 113th Sts/ 10 AM – 5 PM

St. Frances de Sales/ 129-16 Rockaway Beach Boulevard / 9 AM – 6 PM

Coney Island – MCU Parking Lot/ 1904 Surf Avenue/ 8 AM – 5 PM

Far Rockaway – Fort Tilden Park/ Fort Tilden Park (closest end to Breezy Point)/ Beach Channel Boulevard/ 10 AM -5 PM

Please note these locations are also Disaster Assistance Service Centers.

 

NYCHA

The City has assessed all NYCHA housing in Zone A and have found no major long term structural issues. 17 individual developments, 106 buildings have no electrical power. Staff installed generators to provide limited electrical power to the roof tank buildings at Baruch, LaGuardia, Rutgers and Fulton Houses necessary to restore water service. Most NYCHA buildings flooded in the storm have been pumped dry.

NYCHA Flooding operations:

  • 297 elevator pits were flooded, 231 (78%) are complete. 66 pits remain.
  • 26 Boiler rooms flooded, 19 (73%) complete, 7 Boiler rooms remain.
  • Elevators: the Elevator Bureau completed the inspection of elevators affected by the storm:
  • Hurricane Sandy caused 699 elevators to be out of service
  • 480 elevators or 69% of the 699 elevators were repaired and restored to service.

Navy and Marine “de-watering” teams joined the City’s efforts and assisted in pumping water out of NYCHA developments at Beach 41st Street, Hammel Houses, and Ocean Bay Apartments.

BUILDING INSPECTIONS

The Department of Buildings is inspecting 55,000 building in Zone A to ensure safety for New Yorkers. Over 12,600 buildings have been inspected.

Buildings are being tagged with one of three color placards to indicate their safety:

  • Green: the building is structurally safe
  • Red: the building is not safe and may not be entered
  • Yellow: it can be occupied conditionally (i.e. one floor may be safe while another is not.) These conditions would be explained on the placard.

TREES AND DEBRIS

17,615 tree service requests have been made (downed trees or branches). Of these requests, 11,602 were for trees down. 3,961 of these emergency tree conditions have been addressed (a mixture of trees down, hanging limbs and limbs down).

 

PARKS

All parks and playgrounds were previously closed. 75 percent of parks have now been re-opened to the public. 15 recreation centers, 16 nature centers, 12 concessions and 1 cultural institution (the Cloisters Museum) will remain closed to the public until further notice.

Because of sewer system discharges during the hurricane, no one should go in the Hudson or East Rivers, New York Harbor, Jamaica Bay or Kill Van Kull, or on them in a canoe or kayak or for wind-surfing, until further notice.

PUBLIC SAFETY

Storm-related death count is 40.

Police are using the public address systems on department vehicles to inform residents in neighborhoods still without electricity that there are heating shelters available and how to get to them.

Crime during the week of Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath, from Monday, October 29th  through Friday, November 2nd, declined in the City by 32 percent compared to the same week the year before.

Police continued to be deployed today to storm impacted areas by the thousands on extended tours of duty to provide security and recovery assistance.

NYPD Critical Response Vehicles officers normally assigned to counterterrorism duties escorted military vehicles in delivery of food and water to distribution centers throughout the city and helped the military with the delivery of approximately one million meals yesterday.

NYPD officers also delivered food and water to another 17 locations, many near public housing that had been identified by the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau.

There were no hypothermia calls overnight. EMS call volume is average.

In parts of lower Manhattan, three fires occurred in homes where stoves had been left on. People should make sure to turn off all appliances prior to return of electrical power.

FDNY special units are staffing at all designated Disaster Assistance Recovery Centers, providing assistance as needed – including in Rockaways where we will be assist LIPA and NYCHA during power restorations involving high capacity generators for some housing complexes.

VOLUNTEERING, DONATING AND GIVING BLOOD

Cash donations to support these and other efforts can be made through the Mayor’s Fund to Advance New York City.  Learn more here: www.nyc.gov/fund.

Cash donations are preferable to in-kind donations because the logistics of collecting and distributing those supplies are complex.

The Mayor’s Fund has raised $14.2 million donated by more than 3,500 people.

Those who want to volunteer can visit NYC Service at: www.nyc.gov/service.

Giving blood is incredibly helpful right now.  For more information visit: www.nybloodcenter.org.

ROADWAYS

The requirement to have three-people in vehicles travel on crossings into Manhattan was lifted on Friday. Normal regulations apply.

Alternate Side Parking Regulations are suspended citywide tomorrow, Monday, Nov. 5, 2012, to facilitate storm recovery efforts. Alternate Side Parking regulations also are suspended on Tuesday, November 6th, for Election Day. Meters are in effect.

CELL SERVICE

Service continues to improve in the city, though interruptions remain in some areas.

AT&T has deployed mobile charging stations and cell towers throughout the city.  Details from AT&T are here: http://blogs.att.net/consumerblog/story/a7785324.

Verizon has also made significant progress in restoring much of its service in affected areas and will credit uses for overage charges until November 16.

CITY SUPPORT TO BUSINESSES

The City has a package of support for NYC businesses impacted by the storm:

Emergency loans of up to $25,000 for small and mid-sized businesses that have been interrupted as a result of the storm.

  • For larger businesses that were damaged, temporary City and State sales tax deferment on materials needed for rebuilding.
  • For businesses displaced from their locations, the City is offering temporary office space free of charge at the Brooklyn Army Terminal for the next 30 days. The City has identified more than 100,000 of square feet that will be made available, including 40,000 of city space at Brooklyn Army Terminal and approximately 50,000 square feet of space that private sector landlords have agreed to make available.
  • Loans up to $2 million are also available for business property losses not fully covered by insurance – and for businesses that have had cash flow problems caused by the storm and need funds to get back on their feet. That applies to small businesses, agricultural co-ops, and most nonprofits, regardless of size.

FEDERAL DISASTER ASSISTANCE

Anyone affected by Sandy – homeowners, renters, and businesses – can apply for federal disaster assistance.

They can register at www.DisasterAssistance.gov or by calling the Federal Emergency Management agency at 1-800-621-3362.

EMERGENCY SHELTERS

The number of shelters has been consolidated to 14 with one general in-take center. Now has 4,880 evacuees and 1,363 staff.

The shelter system will remain open until evacuees can return to their homes or find short-term housing. A full list of shelters can be found here: http://www.nyc.gov/html/misc/html/2012/hurricane_shelters.html.

CONSTRUCTION

The ban on exterior construction work imposed before the storm has been lifted.

SANITATION

The City is collecting garbage in all boroughs. They are not collecting recycling.

TECHNOLOGY SUPPORT

Those seeking technology support can go to www.nytechresponds.org.

OTHER IMPORTANT INFORMATION

Any food – including packaged food – that was touched by flood water should be thrown away. The flood water may contain sewage or other contamination.

Other items that have been touched by flood water should be cleaned and disinfected.  This should be done as soon as possible to prevent mold growth.

Tap water is safe to drink, except for Breezy Point.

Do not use generators or grills indoors.  Carbon monoxide poisoning is a serious threat when these devices are used indoors.  They should only be used outside and kept away from windows and vents.

Everyone should have and use battery-operated carbon monoxide alarms. They should test the batteries if possible.

If someone experiences sleepiness, dizziness, headaches, confusion, weakness or the carbon monoxide alarm sounds, they should immediately seek fresh air and call the poison control center at 212–POISONS (212-764-7667.) They can also call 911, since poisoning is life threatening.

Important guides on carbon monoxide poisoning and food safety can be found at www.nyc.gov/health.