Brooklyn is No Longer the "Budget-Savvy" Alternative to Manhattan

The second-most expensive hype in all of the U.S.A.
A few months back, we here at the Voice reported that Manhattan's rent was at its highest rate ever, clocking in somewhere around $3,418 a month, on average. Awed by this, I delved into the conundrum that is the Manhattan real estate: if you have to pay an arm and a liver to live on this island, why would you? 

Naturally, the answer is in the name: it's Manhattan, stupid. With its metropolitan charm and the prestige that comes with the phrase, "I live in Manhattan," the conundrum becomes a race to acquire that conversational living title rather than the thought that, wow, the rent is definitely too damn high.

With that in mind, it's no surprise that Manhattan tops the list of the most expensive places to live in America. As an option, I mentioned that you could venture out into the outer boroughs: Queens still offers lower prices in up-and-coming hot spots, like Astoria and Long Island City, and there's always Brooklyn. Turns out I have to bite my tongue a bit.

Yesterday, the Brooklyn Daily Eagle reported that Brooklyn is coming in at number two on that godforsaken list. The study was put together by the Council for Community and Economic Research in Washington; in it, Brooklyn received a score of 183.4 out of 300 and Manhattan scored 233.5. Sorry, but the idea that neighborhoods like Williamsburg, Greenpoint, Bushwick, Fort Greene and a handful of others provide you with a lower hit on your wallet is as old as Madonna. 

In other words, Brooklyn has been Manhattan-ized.
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How to Be a New Yorker: Excerpts from the Memoir of Les Rich

In my story in the Voice last week, inspired by Joan and Leslie Rich's 1964 book, How to Be a New Yorker, I talked to longtime New Yorkers, former New Yorkers, new New Yorkers, and even a few people who've never lived in this town, about what they think it takes to be "a real New Yorker." As expected, the article spurred plenty more discussion on the topic, ranging from emails (thanks, all who sent notes!) to comments on the piece online. Among the responses was this gem:

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Milton Glaser on New Yorkers: 'For Better or Worse You're Here, and Doomed to Be Here'

Courtesy Milton Glaser
Recently I had the pleasure of interviewing Milton Glaser, the 82-year-old graphic designer behind, to name just a few, the "I Love New York" logo, the DC Comics "DC bullet" logo, the famous Bob Dylan poster, and, of course, New York Magazine, which he founded with Clay Felker in 1968, for my article in this week's issue of the Voice, "How to Be a New Yorker."

Glaser spoke of the early years of New York Magazine and revealed his amazement over the success of his "I Love New York" logo, which he did for free in 1977. (Hilariously or not, the state came after him for copyright violation when he did "I Love New York More Than Ever" after 9/11.) He also shared what he thinks it means to be a New Yorker -- and why this is the only place for "real New Yorkers" to live.

Our interview, after the jump.

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NYC Water Main Full of Ghastly, Terrible Gunk


That photo, published on Animal NY today and via MSNBC web producer Meg Robertson, is of a New York City water main. This was on 15th Street near 5th Avenue.

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Dorothy Parker Fan Attempts to Save the Writer's Childhood Home

Sad news today for the old(er) New York includes Cooper Union denying St. Mark's Bookshop a lower rent to help keep them in business. And in other news of historic import, Dorothy Parker's childhood home, a 1890s limestone row house at 214 West 72nd Street, is slated for possible tear-down, with a 12-story luxury apartment complex to be put in its place. Kevin Fitzpatrick, president of the Dorothy Parker Society, is fighting the demolition with a letter-writing campaign to Community Board 7. He asks all fans of Parker to join him in writing a letter, or an email.

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The Media May Not Always Be 100 Percent Clear-Headed in Times of Natural Disasters

A hurricane warning has been issued for New York City. Barack Obama has declared a state of emergency for New York. We hear there is a line at Trader Joe's 100 people long. People are buying off-brand water! Our relatives are stocking up on heirloom tomatoes! And the media is reporting, reporting, reporting, or REPORTING, REPORTING, REPORTING!

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New MTA Campaign Asks "What's New?"

We had hoped the MTA would revive Poetry in Motion, a collaborative campaign between the MTA and Poetry Society of America that brought the likes of Dylan Thomas and Emily Dickinson to the New York City subway walls in the early 90s, but not all of our wishes can be granted, especially when it comes to transportation in this city. Instead, the MTA has rolled out a new advertising campaign that sets up a simple question: "What's new?" To which at least one New Yorkers has taken the time to reply, "Higher prices!" as City Room noticed once already in graffiti form.

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New York May Get State Dog, Can We Keep Him?

via _jennieMarie
Lawmakers are introducing legislation tomorrow that would give New York an official state dog. Assemblyman Micah Kellner and State Senator Joseph E. Robach are partnering up to give the honor to rescue dogs, as in dogs who are rescued and put up for adoption in shelters. Sure, Virginia has an American Foxhound as their official state dog and Pennsylvania has a Great Dane, but a rescue dog is, well, it's very nice.

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New York City Welcomes 929, Yet Another Damn Area Code

Back in December we found out that another area code would be born into our fair city. Its name would be 929, and it would live in the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens, and Staten Island, but not Manhattan, to be adopted by people in need of new service or lines. And now, the day is here, or very nearly here: 929 will officially debut tomorrow, joining friends 212, 718, 917, 646, and 347 in the business of being an area code.

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Free NYC Museums Easy to Find Thanks to New Website

Many tourists (and New York residents) must come here wondering, "What museums are free in this city?"Dan Nguyen, a journalist, web developer, and photographer at ProPublica in New York made the ultra-servicey website in response to a request on Reddit. The website has a Google map with all of the museums pinned and color-coded. The size and colors of the pins tell you which museums are open, how much they charge for admission, and how popular they are. We got a chance to speak with Dan about his new site.

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