NEIGHBORHOOD NEWS

Business

Bikini bar will stay open under new management

Mike Diaz

Community Board 2 approved the liquor license of Hunts Point’s last remaining adult entertainment club – Mr. Wedge — with a yawn, with only one person coming out to voice her disapproval.

Economy / Housing

New housing coming to Longwood

Renderings of a new building planned for 1000 Fox Street.

Renderings have been revealed for two new affordable rental buildings located around the corner from each other near the commercial district of 163rd Street, and a third is going through the city’s approval process.

Education

Local officials want more diversity in specialized high schools

Local officials want more diversity in specialized high schools

Local officials, feeling that the city isn’t doing enough to help black and Hispanic students with SHSAT admissions, are challenging the DOE to make changes to the test process.

Culture

Garífuna band drums to keep culture vibrant

The Bodoma Garifuna Culture Band rehearses.

Over the past 15 years, the band has played in every state of the U.S. as well as Canada. In 2012, they made it to the finals of the Battle of the Boroughs, a yearly competition to find the best undiscovered musicians in the city, and came in second.

Business / Economy

Small businesses brace for rough holiday season

Blueprint clothing store (15 years at the location)
Ronald Elike, owner
1038 Southern
PHOTOGRAPHER: Mohammad Sharif Hassan

Ronald Elike is the owner of the Blueprint, a clothing store, on Southern Blvd. He launched the business in 2002 when few online businesses were selling cloths. His business grew for about a decade, but started trending down about five years ago. 

 “The chain stores have an effect on us, but online is even worse – that’s taken a big chunk of our business away – because a lot of customers are now shopping online,” 41-year-old business owner said. 

Elike tried to embrace the online business in the hope to compensate the store decline. He created a website and started selling on Ebay. The website didn’t help. The Ebay sales, however, increased over time. 

Elike said his business is “tremendously down,” this holiday season. In addition to online and chain store growth, he has another problem – unfriendly weather. With the weather warmer this December, fewer people buy winter clothes. 

“This year in particular we had a lot of issues with weather. It’s been warm. Normally it supposed to be cold [in December]. So, we are selling winter cloths, but people don’t need it right now,” he said.

Though business owners often depend on the holiday season to boost flagging revenues, many in Longwood’s main shopping district along Southern Boulevard say they’re not optimistic as big box stores and online sales have eaten away at their ability to earn a living in recent years.

Crime

Crime way down in Hunts Point in 2017

Crime way down in Hunts Point in 2017

41st Precinct data has revealed a nearly 24 percent drop in crime from 2016 to 2017.

Health

Hunts Point program protects seniors from abuse

Hunts Point program protects seniors from abuse

Earlier this year, a New York state senator introduced a bill that aims to establish mandated reporters responsible for reporting suspected incidents of elder abuse or maltreatment.

Environment

Hunts Point residents answer the call for Puerto Rican families

Christina Torres xxxxxx xxx

The Herreras are among hundreds in the South Bronx whose families have been affected by the devastating hurricane in Puerto Rico.

Culture / Food

Coquitos contest conjures up a taste of Puerto Rico

The Bronx coquito qualifier at Bronx Music Heritage Center, taken by Debbie Quiñones  .

The creamy, rum and coconut-based drink is not only a signal that the holiday season is upon us, it is a ritual that each family has a secret recipe for.