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Bloomberg Keeps ‘Tribute in Light’ Shining Through the Pandemic, Cops Save Opossum, and Other News

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Here’s some of what happened around town this week.

Gary Hershorn/Getty Images

9/11 Commemorated During the Pandemic

As is the case with most everything this year, mourning the loss of New Yorkers killed during the 9/11 attacks looks a bit different: The memorial service marking the 19th anniversary of the terrorist attack was downsized in order to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. In past years, loved ones of the nearly 3,000 victims have gathered at ground zero to read aloud the names of the dead. But during Friday’s service, a recorded broadcast of the victims’ names read by family was played over speakers. (There were dueling memorials, in fact: Mayor Rudy Giuliani attended a live reading of names in Zuccotti Park instead.)

Meanwhile, the annual Tribute in Light, which beams into the sky from the location of the destroyed towers (on a clear night, it can be seen from 60 miles away), almost didn’t happen this year. In August, the National September 11 Memorial & Museum canceled it as a result of the coronavirus crisis, citing that it takes a team of 40 stagehands and electricians working closely for more than a week to ready the installation.

But former mayor Michael Bloomberg and the state’s Lower Manhattan Development Corporation stepped in with offers to offset the extra costs of health and safety precautions and to provide additional technical support. The museum has organized the tribute for the past eight years, and Alice Greenwald, the president and CEO of the museum, stressed in a statement that “this year, its message of hope, endurance, and resilience are more important than ever.”

Record Number of Manhattan Rental Apartments Sit Empty (and Other Happenings in NYC)

One hundred and fifty adult families — many of whom have disabilities — could be displaced from a midtown homeless shelter to make room for the residents Mayor de Blasio decided to remove (under pressure from NIMBYs) from the Upper West Side’s Lucerne Hotel.

The MTA will start issuing $50 fines to public-transit riders who don’t wear a mask (and will also provide free ones for people who don’t have them).

Empty storefronts along Columbus Avenue (between 67th and 77th Streets) will soon display curated art from neighbors as part of an initiative called Art on the Ave.

A walking tour around the Gowanus Canal, happening on September 12, will delve into the waterway’s history and its future (including the federal cleanup and the city’s planned rezoning).

In August, Manhattan’s rental-market vacancy rate reached a record 5.1 percent, the highest in 14 years, according to appraisal firm Miller Samuel.

A new report shows that closing sales prices at nine Trump-branded condos dropped 25 percent in four years, between 2016 and 2020.

As part of Waterfront Alliance’s City of Water Day, the South Street Seaport Museum will reopen its tall ship Wavertree, a large sailing ship built in England in 1885, this Saturday. Nautical events will take place in neighborhoods across the city to celebrate the NYC’s waterways and to highlight the imminent threat of climate change to New York.

In advance of a City Council hearing next week on the contested Industry City rezoning, more than 100 protesters rallied outside the Chelsea home of City Council Speaker Corey Johnson, urging him not to support the waterfront complex’s plan to drastically expand its footprint with new retail and office space.

Completed in 1874, the colorfully ornate Concert Grove Pavilion in Prospect Park — designed by famed landscape architects Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux — is getting a face-lift.

The Village Halloween Parade, a must-attend All Hallows’ Eve tradition in New York, has been canceled this year due to the coronavirus — making this only the second year in the past 47 years without the ghoulish procession.

All in a day’s work: An NYPD officer removed an opossum from the ledge of a Manhattan office building Thursday morning.

A new pop-up-concert mini-series at Bryant Park starts Monday and will feature musicians from the American Symphony Orchestra.