Thursday, October 30, 2014

No Roosevelt Island F Subway Service From Manhattan Right Now Due To Train Mechanical Problems At 21st Street Station Earlier This Afternoon Says MTA

As of 5:20 PM, there is no Roosevelt Island F Train service from Manhattan due to mechanical problems at the 21 Street/Queensbridge station

earlier this afternoon.
According to the MTA:

UPDATE 9;45 PM - According to CBS New York the cause of the F train service disruption today was:
An enormous drill bit plowed right into a subway tunnel and grazed an occupied F Train in Queens on Thursday.

The train had just pulled out of the 21st Street station in Long Island City, Queens, around 11:45 a.m., when the drill bit plowed into the occupied subway car, the Metropolitan Transportation Authority confirmed to CBS2.

The drilling was part of the East Side Access project to bring the Long Island Rail Road trains to Grand Central Terminal, officials said. A worker employed by a contractor — Griffin Dewatering New England Inc. — was using the drill above ground near the station, and was supposed to be expanding a construction well, officials said....
Click here for the full story.

NY City Lens On Changing Scene Of Roosevelt Island Main Street Retail - Possible New Thai Restaurant, Day Care Center And Bank, Also 8 New Burgers From Trellis

NY City Lens is an online news site produced by Columbia University Graduate School Of Journalism students. NYC Lens recently profiled Roosevelt Island's Main Street retail scene with a story titled:
Roosevelt Island Gambles on a Brighter Future

Here comes Cornell and Riverwalk, and a renovated downtown is feeling optimistic.
According to NY City Lens:
... Hal Shapiro, managing director of Winick Realty Group, which does retail leasing, said the problem is that many people don’t really know the island. He needs to explain things about it, such as its beautiful scenery with open space and parks, its population and economic increase and in the past years with finished new residential buildings, and its potential growth since Cornell is coming. And most importantly, he pointed out, that the island is underserved. He said, now he is talking with three potential tenants—a Thai restaurant, a daycare center, and a bank, asking for 50 dollars per square feet.

“Things are happening,” said Shapiro. Saks-Rosenberg agrees. Five years ago the Main Street Retail Study said that Roosevelt Island residents do just 12% of their shopping on the Island, she said, “and now people start to really shop on the island and go to the stores, which was not the case two years ago. ”

However, many residents are still used to their off-the-Main-Street shopping habits. Rachelle Sumersford orders from Fresh Direct online, Fidel Lakew walks across the bridge to the Costco in Queens and gets a cab back, and Dorothy Jefferies goes to Fairway and Agata on Manhattan Island by public transportation....
... Kaie Razaghi and his son Alex come to the island every day from Astoria to work on the renovation of Trellis Diner. He was excited and proud of what he is doing. “We are gonna provide a restaurant dining experience,” said Razaghi. “Now I only have three different burgers. I will have eight when I open up. When I say eight, I don’t mean eight beef burgers with different toppings; I mean eight different meats!”

Razaghi hopes people will come to the Main Street for what he is doing—the modern design of the storefront, the new menu, and the dining experience. “I haven’t been making money for the past two years. It’s either take the money and go buy somewhere else, or put the money in, and take a chance. I put the money in here, and take a chance.”...
Hezi Jiang is the reporter on the Roosevelt Island retail story. She did an excellent job. Click here for the full article.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Will Roosevelt Island Residents Association Continue Advisory Role In Public Purpose Funds Recommendations To RIOC?

Pile Of Money Image From Passive Income Genius

Since at least 2008, the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) has been tasked by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) to evaluate applications and make recommendations to RIOC for the allocation of approximately $100 Thousand annually in Public Purpose Funds to Roosevelt Island non-profit organizations. As reported in 2012:
... The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) has been delegated by RIOC to make recommendations to the RIOC Board for the allocation of available Public Purpose Funds. RIRA created a Public Purpose Funds Committee that will interview and evaluate the applicant organizations and then make recommendations as to how the funds get distributed to the full RIRA Common Council. Upon approval by the RIRA Common Council, the recommendations are forwarded to the RIOC Board for approval...
Question have been raised recently whether RIRA will continue with its role of making Roosevelt Island Public Purpose Funds recommendations to RIOC. At the October 1 RIRA Common Council Meeting, Dave Evans, who chairs the RIRA Public Purpose Funds Committee addressed the future role of RIRA in the Public Purpose Funds process.

The October RIRA Common Council postponed any further discussion of its role in Public Purpose Funds until a future meeting.

Last week, I asked RIOC President Charlene Indelicato:
During the October RIRA meeting, there was a discussion that RIOC plans to stop delegating the Public Purpose Funds vetting process to RIRA and to either evaluate the applications internally by RIOC or through a third party other than RIRA.

Is that true?

Does RIOC have any comment on the matter.
Ms. Indelicato replied:
We have not finalized the method of distribution as yet but be assured it will be in accordance with all applicable laws, rules and regulations.
RIOC approved the 2014 Public Purpose Funds RIRA recommendations during April 11 Board of Directors meeting and:
... concluded that the process followed by RIRA has been fair and the amounts recommended for each grantee to be reasonable....
with both RIOC Director David Kraut and RIOC President Charlene Indelicato complimenting RIRA on its handling of the Public Purpose Funds allocation process.

Portion Of Roosevelt Island Seawall Railing Held Together With .... A Plastic Water Bottle - RIOC Plans $13 Million In Seawall and Railings Improvements For Upcoming Fiscal Year

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports:

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 2015-16 (Page 6), RIOC has:
... proposed improvement of the seawall at Southpoint Park ("SPP"). The capital plan as proposed includes a scheduled corresponding expenditure for seawall and railing work at SPP in FY 16‐17. The critical shoring of this infrastructure will stem further deterioration of the affected seawall sections and increase the longevity of RIOC's capital investments in the area...
RIOC's Proposed 2015 -16 Fiscal Year Budget Capital Plan contemplates spending $10 million on the Southpoint Park Seawall and $3 million on Seawall Railing Replacement (Page 9).

Here's the discussion of Roosevelt Island seawall improvements by RIOC President Charlene Indelicato and RIOC Director David Kraut during October 22 RIOC Audit Committee meeting on RIOC's Proposed 2015-16 Fiscal Year budget.

The full audio web cast of the Audit Committee meeting on proposed budget is here.

Roosevelt Island Women's Health Organization October Monthly Seminar Tonight - Meaningful World's Dr. Ani Kalayjian Speaks On Healing After Violent Trauma

The Roosevelt Island Women's Health Organization (RIWHO) sends the following invitation for its October 29 Monthly Seminar starting 6:30 PM tonight.

According to RIWHO:
A reminder of RIWHO's seminar on Wednesday, October 29. Dr. Kalayjian speaks on past and present traumas that affect a person's lives. She speaks on healing those traumas. She travels internationally to effect those healing possibilities bridging religious and cultural differences. An opportunity to experience an exercise in her healing modality, especially for those in the healing/medical professions.
More on Dr Kalayjian at Meaningful World web site and this video.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

What Do You Call A Drink That's Kind Of A Manhattan, But Not Really - A Roosevelt Island Of Course

From the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse:
Cocktail anyone?

Tables Turned On NY Governor Andrew Cuomo Robo Caller - Roosevelt Island Resident Asks When Governor Cuomo Will Appoint Someone To Fill Long Vacant RIOC Board Of Directors Seat

Roosevelt Island resident Janet Falk describer her recent experience with a Robo-Caller from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo's campaign seeking her vote. According to Ms. Falk:
Answer the Question, Governor Cuomo

It's election season, so we all are getting phone calls from candidates and their robo-callers. One campaigner at a telephone bank unexpectedly got an earful. Let me reconstruct the conversation:

"Hi Janet, this is Bruce. I'm calling on behalf of Governor Andrew Cuomo. Can he count on your vote in the election on Tuesday, November 4?"

"That's a good question, and I have a question for you, too. If you will answer my question, then I will answer yours. (pause) When will Governor Cuomo appoint someone to the vacant seat on the Board of Directors of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation? And, come to think of it, when will he address the fact that the terms of all the members who are residents of Roosevelt Island have expired?"

"Wow, Janet, I can't answer that for you."

"Of course you can't. So, I suggest you find someone who can answer those questions and when you do, call me back. Then I'll give you my answer about whether I'm voting for Governor Cuomo."

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors seat referenced by Ms. Falk has been vacant since February 2013 when former Child School principal and RIOC Board Director Sal Fererra abruptly resigned.

WNYC's Brian Lehrer reports on a different type of Robo Calling - not for any particular candidate

but just trying to get people to vote.

UPDATE 12:40 PM - Oops, correction. The call Ms. Falk received from Governor Cuomo's campaign was from a phone bank, not an automated robo-call.