12/04/14 9:18am

Earlier this year we partnered with UncommonGoods to launch the Brooklyn Flag Project. We challenged design-minded folks from all over the borough to create a flag reflecting their neighborhood, with the promise that the top three would be produced for sale by UncommonGoods. Along with former Brooklyn Borough President Marty Markowitz, Tina Roth Eisenberg–the graphic designer known as @SwissMiss, and UncommonGoods founder David Bolotsky, we helped winnow down a fantastic field of entries to eight finalists.

UncommonGoods awarded cash prizes to the top three winners, but decided not to produce the flags for sale after all–they told us that they had hoped to see flags from a wider variety of neighborhoods, though we thought the entries from East New York, Bay Ridge, Flatbush, Coney Island and Ditmas Park nicely rounded out the multiple flags designed for Greenpoint and Fort Greene–locales that lots of graphic designers call home. Even if you can’t buy one of these to hang from your fire escape, we think it’s worth taking a peek at the winners. And, as a bonus, we’ve added in our favorite entry that didn’t win (we’re suckers for a squirrel).



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01/10/14 8:59am

For this edition of the Narrative Month in Brooklyn we’re looking beyond what’s already happened and on to the new year. From real estate to retail, and from Park Slope to East New York, here are the 10 Brooklyn-based stories we know you’ll be taking about in 2014.

10. Greenpoint Goes Big

Greenpoint's not-so-distant future?

Greenpoint’s not-so-distant future?

If you’re not a fan of what Mayor Bloomberg did to the Williamsburg waterfront, you probably won’t be jazzed about the new towers set to rise up over Greenpoint. In December, the City Council approved 10 shiny mega-towers planned for the waterfront, despite opposition from some community groups, like Save Greenpoint, who fear the buildings will ruin Greenpoint’s quiet, neighborly appeal. Expect this noisy fight to continue in 2014.

9. The Legalize Weed Battle Comes to NYC

With Colorado, California and other Western states leading the charge on legalizing marijuana, New York is set to seriously enter the fray as well. State Senator Liz Krueger recently introduced a bill to tax and legalize it, and while Gov. Cuomo has called that measure a non-starter, his own recent moves in favor of medical marijuana have pushed the conversation forward. Incoming Brooklyn D.A. Ken Thompson is also firmly aboard the decriminalization train. Prediction: by year’s end, at least one Brooklynite announces plan for an artisan, hand-made-in-Red-Hook line of cannabis.

8. De Blasio’s Vision Zero

While Bloomberg cemented his transportation legacy by building pedestrian plazas and bike lanes, Mayor de Blasio campaigned consistently on the promise of reducing traffic fatalities. His “Vision Zero” traffic safety plan, like Bloomberg’s, looks to Scandinavia, specifically a holistic Swedish approach that emphasizes road design, lower speed limits, and decisions made on the hyper-local level. De Blasio has pledged to install more 20mph speed limit zones and to allow NYC to bypass Albany and have the power to install red light camera zones wherever local officials see fit.

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