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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Nolan Ryan and George Bush Are Not Very Happy After New York Yankees Beat Texas Rangers Last NIght - Fantastic 8th Inning Comeback Win

Image From Sons Of Sam Horn

Great Picture. Nolan Ryan and Former President George Bush were not enjoying themselves very much during last night's 8th inning as the Yankees overcame a 5-0 deficit to beat the Texas Rangers 6-5.

Go Yankees - Win today!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Embargo Roosevelt Island Tram Cabin Test Run Photos Instructs RIOC Staffer - No Way, Information Wants To Be Free

 Image Of Roosevelt Island Tram Test From Judy Berdy

 After months and more months of the Roosevelt Island Tram being out of service, testing of the Tram Cabins finally began last week. At that time a Roosevelt Island resident was standing near the Tram Station, observed the Tram Cabins being placed in the Station, saw the Cabin being attached to the Carriage and Cable, and witnessed one of the early (if not the first) test runs of the Roosevelt Island Tram. The Roosevelt Island resident took some pictures, shown above and below, of this important Roosevelt Island milestone. I included these pictures in this post from October 7.


  Image Of Roosevelt Island Tram Test From Judy Berdy

What could possibly be wrong with doing so? Who could object? Well, someone did object to the pictures being taken and shown to the public. That person was Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Vice President Of Planning and Intergovernmental Affairs Rosina Abramson who saw the pictures being taken and instructed the photographer that the pictures were "embargoed".

Upon learning of this, I inquired of Ms. Abramson:
I have been advised that on at least 2 recent occasions you have attempted to stop Roosevelt Island residents from taking pictures while standing on public property. In one instance this occurred near the Southtown Yard where the Tram Cabins were being stored while NY 1 was conducting an interview with Ms. Torres. The other occasion took place at the Tram Station while the first Tram Cabin was being tested on the Track. In that instance you also reportedly told the person that the photos were not to be published but should be "embargoed".

Is any of this true?

If so, is there some sort of new RIOC policy controlling who may or may not take photos from public spaces on Roosevelt Island?
Ms. Abramson responded:
No one was stopped from taking photos of the cabins from public property while the cabins were stored behind a gate.  There was a gentleman who entered into the construction site area when the gate was opened for Tram related business.  He was asked to leave only when he began badgering Ms. Torres for an interview and for a posed photo of her.  If you speak of another incident, I am unaware of it.

Regarding the request for an embargo of the photos being taken of the cabin being launched on the north tracks last Tuesday, they were photos being taken of an active construction site.  There are serious security concerns regarding the integral operations of the tram that RIOC has been asked not to publicize by uniformed services.  There was no way to know what unauthorized photos had been taken of the actual work being conducted on a non-public work site.

Moreover - the request to embargo the photos until further notice was made on a professional basis.  In my experience, professional journalists always respect requests for embargoes. I had understood that you wanted professional journalistic courtesies extended to your blog.  It's a two way street.
I replied:
Thank you for your comment on matter.

As you know, there was no request for an "embargo" on those photos made to me.

Even so, a request by you for an embargo on a photo might be complied with if the photo was supplied by RIOC, not if taken by me or any other resident/person of a breaking news story - which certainly is the case for the launch of the first test of the Tram Cabin.

Also, do you really think that photos taken from public property outside the Tram Station are what "uniformed service" are referring to as "security concerns"?
Followed by Ms. Abramson:
Then your photographer was remiss in communicating information to you as your agent and I was remiss in assuming that RIOC could rely on the professional courtesy requested from your agent. Regarding security issues - RIOC is not prepared to take the risk.

I don't think there's much more to say on the subject.
But I had one more thing to say:
The only thing I would add is that you should be aware that in this new media world any person, be it a Roosevelt Island resident, visitor or any other human being is a potential source and publisher of information - not only so-called 'journalists".

People who provide information to the Roosevelt Islander Blog, be it photos or text, are not my "agents" but are concerned and engaged persons in the community. I have no control over what they send. The only control I have is whether I choose to publish the material sent to me on the Roosevelt Islander Blog - or not.

The person who took the photographs at the Tram Station was not my 'photographer" but an engaged Roosevelt Island resident acting in that individual capacity and willing to share important, newsworthy photographs with the Roosevelt Island and New York City community, as well as anyone else interested.

There was no lack of "professional courtesy" on my or the photographer's part. I can assure the staff at RIOC, that they can rely on my "professionalism" when reporting for the Roosevelt Islander Blog....
Additional pictures of Roosevelt Island Tram Cabin Tests that Ms. Abramson wanted to have embargoed are here.

Another example of the desire of some to keep information from being made public comes not from a governmental agency such as RIOC, but from a private citizen and resident of Roosevelt Island's Rivercross Mitchell Lama Building who has certain non-specific privacy objections to fellow Rivercross resident David Bauer's reporting on issues of concern to their building for the Roosevelt Islander Blog.

Image of Rivercross from Adventures of a Goodman

In response to these privacy concerns, Mr. Bauer makes the case for openness and transparency in the distribution of public information:
 Thank you for your thoughts on a very important point.

As you recall, a significant amount of time at our 10/5 meeting was spend in considering the extent to which the Rivercross Board has attempted to draw a circle for sharing information, with some Shareholders being inside the circle and most being outside that circle. As I recall, an imposed veil of Board secrecy did not gain much support at our meeting.

There are a couple of thoughts your comment brings to mind. Having worked in the local government sector during the major part of my adult life I have had to face up to the question you raise; how big a circle of confidentiality do you want to have. Eventually, through the passage of what is called a "Sunshine Law" it was determined that the public had the right to any information involving the local government, with the exceptions being 1) narrowly defined personnel matters and 2) when developing strategy for a court case. That "Sunshine Law" right goes so far as to require elected officials to give public notice and attendance whenever two or more officials meet to discuss public business, formally or informally. Public business has a different glow than private business. Rivercross is public business, having been supported in its inception by taxpayer financing, just as our whole Island has been. 

I learned early on how futile it is to attempt to restrict access to public information, even meetings involving as few as two people. I found out through hard experience that if there is a matter, without regard to how large or small that matter seems to be, the policy of attempted secrecy just does not work and in fact the mere appearance of  attempting to keep something secret makes it more appealing for those on the outside to make every effort to find out what is going on, and sometimes imaging quite horrendous matters when in reality the matter was minor.

In the case of the Shareholder Forum, we are dealing with a group of over 35 people who are privy to what we discuss. To imagine that any topic we consider might in anyway be kept within a veil of secrecy is expecting the impossible; having laid it out for anyone to see relieves us of the obligation to offer some lame excuses for trying to keep anything secret.

I could be wrong, but I can not conceive that anything that might be discussed within the Forum framework is deleterious to any proper person, project or event.

However, if you would like to add this matter to the forum scheduled for Tuesday 10/26 I would hope you take a lead position in discussing the point.
I agree with Mr. Bauer.

UPDATE 4:25 - Here's a great picture from today of a "Swinging Roosevelt Island Tram".


The resident who took the picture wrote that this post is:

... inspiring me to take more pics of the tram!

Information wants to be free!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Nominations Open For 2010-12 Common Council Delegates - Come Participate And Help Improve Your Community

RIRA 2010 Nomination Flyer

Do you want to help improve life here on Roosevelt Island? Provide input on issues of importance to you and your neighbors such as Affordable Housing, Public Safety, Transportation (Red Bus,Tram, Bicycles, Ferries),  Main Street Retail, Parks, Parking, Dogs and anything else you can think of?

 Image of RIRA October 2010 Meeting

If so, please consider representing your building area as a delegate to the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council in the upcoming November 2, 2010 elections and lending your voice and expertise to these discussions.

The RIRA Nominations Committee explains the process for running below:
ROOSEVELT ISLAND RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION E L E C T I O N S are COMING! ! TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 2, 2010

Nomination Forms Available October 1-24 Want to become an active participant in your local community?

Now’s your chance!

Nomination forms at locations listed below! * RUN FOR ONE OF THESE COMMON COUNCIL POSITIONS:

President, Vice President, (Island Wide) ,or Common Council Representative (for your own building‘)
Following these 2 simple steps will place your name in the running:

1) Fill out completely and SIGN form, available October 1-24.
2) Place the form in the nominations receiving box located at Public Safety

Eligibility: All nominees must be
1) 18 years of age and
2) a resident of RI for at least one year (only if running for President or Vice President). There is no residency time limit for those only running to represent their building or complex.

Nominees are NOT required to be U.S. citizens for this local election.

If you know someone you’d like to nominate, fill out the form. The nominee MUST complete his/her portion to make form valid. Deposit COMPLETED forms in the RIRA nominations box located at Public Safety (550 Main St.) by 8:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 24, 2010.

Incomplete forms will be considered invalid!

*Blank nomination forms may be found at the Public Safety office, the RI Public Library and in many residential buildings. You may also get the nomination form thru e-mail by sending a request
to Aaron Hamburger, phone: 212-7582623, e-mail: ashamburger33@gmail.com GOOD LUCK & WE’LL SEE YOU AT THE VOTING BOOTH!
Questions? Call Aaron Hamburger at 212-758-2623
Will have more on the RIRA elections in the coming days. Please consider getting involved and running to represent your buildings in the RIRA Common Council. The Common Council Member Seats are apportioned as follows:
  • 546 Main Street in Eastwood - 2 seats
  • The rest of Eastwood - 7 seats
  • 2 River Road - 1 seat
  • 4 River Road - 1seat
  • 10, 20, 30 and 40 River Road - 8 seats
  • Westview - 3 seats
  • Island House - 3 seats
  • Rivercross - 3 seats
  • Southtown Buildings - 9 seats
  • Octagon - 5 seats
If any candidate wishes to provide a statement regarding their candidacy, I am happy to provide them space on the Roosevelt Islander Blog.

There are at least 2 new candidates for Southtown's RIRA delegates, Vinicius (Vini) and Lorena Fortuna. They created an excellent web site for their candidacy including some valuable RIRA election information. They are a great example of the type of new blood needed for Roosevelt Island and RIRA.

A meet the candidates night has been scheduled for each building's Candidates as well as for the Island wide elections for President and Vice President. The Candidate's Night Schedule is as follows:
  • Southtown - October 26
  • WIRE Buildings - October 27
  • Manhattan Park and Octagon October 28 and
  • President and Vice President October 27 following the WIRE's Building's Candidate Night
RIRA Nomination Forms are available here from the Main Street WIRE.

 Image of RIRA 2008-20010 Common Council
While it is true that RIRA has no real power or authority on any particular issue, RIRA is considered to be the voice of the residents by those who do have such power, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Of Directors and staff as well as our elected officials, which is why RIRA is important.

Again, please consider running for the RIRA Board. The Roosevelt Island community needs your input and expertise.

Another Accident Involving Access-A-Ride Van On Roosevelt Island - Driver Has Seizure And Drifts Into Oncoming Traffic Hitting Red Bus, But No Injuries Reported

Image Of Roosevelt Island Red Bus/ Access-A=Ride Accident from Trevre Andrews

A reader reports that there was an accident this morning involving the Roosevelt Island Red Bus and an Access-A-Ride van near the Motorgate Garage and sent in the above picture.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Director of Public Safety adds:
There was a minor accident on Main St. where an Access-a-ride driver apparently had a seizure of some sort, and drifted into the oncoming traffic lane.  A RIOC Bus was stopped and the Access-a-ride bus bumped into the RIOC Bus that was not in motion.  There were no injuries and EMS was called for the Access-a-ride driver.
Fortunately nobody was hurt unlike the incident in September when a man in a wheelchair was run over by an Access-A-Ride van.

UPDATE 4 PM: Here's another view of the accident.

Image Of Roosevelt Island Red Bus/ Access-A=Ride Accident from Trevre Andrews

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Deadline For Responding To Roosevelt Island Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder Request For Proposals Postponed Until November 1

Main Street Image From Jones Lang LaSalle

A reader of RIOC President Leslie Torres October 7 RIOC Report asks:
Any news about Main Street stores?
I replied:
No news regarding Main Street Stores other than responses to the RFP are due on October 13.
Well, not anymore.  During yesterday's RIOC October Board Meeting, it was reported that the deadline for submitting responses to the Roosevelt Island Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder Request For Proposals has been postponed until November 1. The reason given was that additional time was needed to respond to questions about the RFP - which I guess is a good sign that there is interest by potential bidders.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Recap For Week 3 Of The Roosevelt Island Youth Program Soccer League With Current Standings And Game Summaries

Image From Roosevelt Island Youth Program (Click On It To Enlarge)

Here's a recap for Week 3 of the Roosevelt Island Youth Program Soccer League
Roosevelt Island Youth Program Soccer League

Weekend Recap

Minor Division

In the first match on Saturday the Royal team, who lost their first two games, finally put it together by defeating Red 4-0. This was a team win by Royal with Taliq Young, Gabriel Price, Eric Leonand Max Thomle each scoring goals. The Red team had strong performances by Simon Rickman and Eva Chenn. Eva had the save of the day; catching a strong penalty shot without flinching.

In the second match, the Lt Blue team defeated Grey 3-1. Lead by Luke Chavez, who scored twice, and Manuel Correa who scored the third goal. Shumas Hasegawa and Luna Jadenwere also in on many plays. The Grey Team had great performances by Jared Pazmino, Frenando Rey and Huang Hangong.

Junior Division

This week the juniors started playing on Thursday evening at 6pm. Royal and Red were playing for first place in the division. Both teams were 2-0 coming into this match. Royal, who had turned in two dominating matches in week one and two met their match. Red defeated those 6-2. Everything seemed to go right for Red. Strong performances were turned in by Aammar Bennani, Blaise Enama and Theo Spedalle. Royals Alesandro Cartegni , Sam Merrick and Jethro hurt played hard.

In the other match, Grey and Lt Blue played to a 6-6 tie. Lt Blue had goals from Andrew “James Cagney) Herlihy, Mark Shinozaki and Tshering Ponjo. Grey spread the field with great passing form DJ Smith, Aaron Pazmino and Chris Ewing.

On Saturday, Grey played undefeated Red in a tough fought match but came up short, losing 5-3. Grey had goals from Aaron Pazmino, Dj Smith and Taj Young. Red had awesome play by Blaise Enama, James Muir and Raymond Efthimiou.

In the other match Royal defeated Lt Blue 8-2. Regis Enama and Karina Loureiro combined for a few goals. Isabel Torkornoo played outstanding goalie stopping a few hard shots as Lt Blue put on a late charge to score.

Senior Division

The Senior Division plays on Friday evening and Saturday afternoon. Under the lights on Friday evening, we had two fantastic matches. Grey and Lt Blue played to a 4-4 tie and Red defeated Royal 1-0. In the first match, the Grey team played the first half with only ten players and managed to Keep Lt Blue to a 2-2 half. Goals were scored by Luka Deluka and Kevin Leon. Then Grey went head 4-2 early in the second half with goals by Gabby Beola and Mathew Epstien. Lt Blue regrouped and put two in the net to tie the game 4-4, with one minute left on the clock. Shahryar Iqbai and Ivan Vuckovic both scored on assist by Luc Goldmansour.

The second match was a battle between Red and Royal. They played the first half nil – nil(0-0) with both teams have great opportunities to score. Then in the 50th minute, John King, who usually plays goalie, scored to the left side of the net to go up 1-0.

On Saturday, Red was handed their first loss, losing to Lt Blue 2-1. Kevin Leon scored on a penalty kick and Shahryar Iqbai scored the game winner. Roman Bogolomny scored the lone goal for Red.

In the Second match, Royal Blue had a dominating performance beating Grey 9-4. Tristan Todorovic scored 4 times being in the right place every time. Other goals were scored by Iliana Wong(first ever) David Bass, Tsherng Penjor and Jean Marti. Grey, who was missing key players, Xena Ticona, and Mathew Epstein, tried their best. Luka Delic scored great touch goal on an Assist from Luka Deluka. Deluka later scored to try to stay in the match.

Games are on Thursday 6PM to 7:30PM, Friday 6PM to 9:30PM and Saturday morning from 9AM to 4:30PM, everyone is welcome and we offer the best prices in town, “It’s free”.
Stay tuned for more reports from the Roosevelt Island Youth Program Soccer League. The current standings for the Roosevelt Island Youth Program Soccer League are posted on the blog's middle sidebar across from the comment sections together with results from most recent games.

Roosevelt Island Board Of Directors Meeting Today At The Manhattan Park Community Center - Presentation Of RIOC's Proposed Fiscal Year 2011 -2012 Budget

 Image of August 2010 RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting At Manhattan Park Theater Club

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp. (RIOC) will be holding it's October Board of Directors meeting tonight October 12 starting at 5:30 PM. The meeting is being held at the Manhattan Park Community Center instead of the Good Shepherd Community Center. Prior to the start of the Board meeting there will be a period of time for members of the community to comment and ask questions of the Board Members. According to RIOC:
A 30-45 minute public comment period wherein those who sought to address the Board would have pre-registered, with time for any speaker limited to two (2) minutes. Pre-registration would be accomplished by addressing RIOC at its web site or in person at RIOC's office prior to the day of the meeting. Public comment should be for the purpose of receiving comment, not to engage in debate or colloquy with board members. The Chair would control the time and limit for each speaker.

By scheduling the public comment period as above, the town hall style session following alternate Board meetings should be obviated. The RIRA meetings now held the evenings before each Board could function as the equivalent of a town hall meeting, with Board members attending as they wish, but with the expectation that a senior RIOC staff person would also attend to answer questions on Agenda items.
Below is the Agenda for RIOC's October 2010 Board Of Directors Meeting.
AGENDA

OCTOBER 12, 2010
MEETING OF THE ROOSEVELT ISLAND OPERATING CORPORATION BOARD OF DIRECTORS
THE MANHATTAN PARK COMMUNITY CENTER,
8 RIVER ROAD, ROOSEVELT ISLAND, NEW YORK,
5:30 P.M.1

I. Call to Order
II. Roll Call
III. Approval of Minutes
1. August 4, 2010 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)
IV. Old Business
V. New Business
1. Authorization to Amend the Engineering Consulting Contract with Shea Carr Jewell, Inc. in Connection with the Aerial Tramway Modernization Project (Board Action Required)
2. Authorization to Enter into Amendment of Cell Antenna License Agreement with Verizon (Board Action Required)
3. Authorization to Enter into Amendment of Cell Antenna License Agreement with Sprint (Board Action Required)
4. Authorization to Take Certain Actions to Comply with Chapters 174 and 175 of the 2010 Laws of the State of New York (Board Action Required)
5. Presentation of the Proposed RIOC Budget for FY 2011-2012 (Materials to Follow)
6. Presentation of the FY 2010-2011 QTR 1 Procurement Report
7. Committee Reports
a. Audit Committee
b. Governance Committee
c. Operations Advisory Committee
d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee
8. Public Safety Report
9. President's Report

VI. Adjournment

1 The RIOC Board Meeting will commence following a public comment period, which is not a part of the RIOC Board Meeting.
Agenda Item # 5 is the Presentation of the Proposed RIOC Budget for FY 2011-2012.

Budget highlights include (Page 2):
Overall, budgeted net income (before depreciation) is projected to increase a healthy 6%, as shown above. Please note that when comparing the FY2012 numbers to the FY2011, the revenues and expenses are somewhat skewed upward due to a full year of operations for the Tram (see page 6.) Of the above increase in net income of $130,446, $119,700 is attributed to a full year of the Tram's operations.

Personal expenses (detailed starting on page 17) are projected to increase approximately 5%. Through attrition, 2 full-time positions will be eliminated reducing the number of full-time personnel to 116. Included in the staffing plan are COLA increases, performance bonuses and wage adjustments. As was the case last year, all increases will be contingent upon the State's budget constraints and will require Board approval.

Fringe benefits are projected to increase a hefty 10%, primarily due to a 25% increase in pension costs and a 10% increase in health insurance. In order to contain personal costs, Management is committed to limiting staff levels wherever possible.

As noted on page 9 under "Budget Risks", the development of the remaining 3 Southtown buildings will have a significant impact on future projected cash flow. Until the fate of development is known, major capital projects not deemed as "necessary" will be deferred. Major capital projects slated to start next year are: Good Shepherd Plaza & Roof Restoration ($1.4M), Main Street Road Repair ($0.8M), Seawall Railing Replacement ($2M), Sportspark HVAC Replacement ($0.6M) and Motorgate Lighting and Interior Renovation ($1.4M).
As to the development of Hudson/Related Riverwalk Southtown Buildings 7-9 the Proposed Budget reports (Page 9):
... As noted in last year's budget, the development of Southtown 7, 8 & 9 will have a significant impact on the future cash flow of the Corporation. The developer, Hudson/Related holds an option to develop the site which expires on December 31, 2012. Early discussions with Hudsion/Related appear to be positive although development would depend on market conditions. If Hudson/Related did not go forth with development of 7,8 & 9 they would owe the Corporation a de-designation fee of Approx. $1,500,000 and the net effect on projected cash flows would be as follows:(See Chart on Page 9)
As disclosed above, if the development of Southtown #7, 8 & 9 does not go forward and current projected spending levels remained the same, the Corporation would incurr a negative beginning in 2021. Until the fate of development is known (the latter part of 2012), major capital projects not deemed as necessary will not be initiated...
You can listen to RIOC's CFO Steve Chironis explain the Proposed Budget to the RIOC Audit Committee on October 6 at this audio web cast. Mr. Chironis also reported that the Hudson/Related condo building at 415 Main Street, Riverwalk Court, has sold 90 of 123 condo units to date but that the remaining unsold units will be now be leased as rentals.

The entire Proposed RIOC 2011-12 Budget is here for your review. The Budget will be presented to the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) in November and voted upon by the RIOC Board of Directors in December.

A web cast of the RIOC Board Meeting well be made available a few days after the meeting.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Solar Powered Hybrid Ferry Technology May Be Coming To New York City Waterfront Starting With Roosevelt Island - Vision 2020 Waterfront Planning Meeting October 12

Image Of Hong Kong Solar Hybrid Ferry From Itech Diary

 I have reported before about how Roosevelt Island is at the forefront of experimenting with new technology for improving urban living:
Roosevelt Island receives much grief from many of our fellow New York City residents for being strange, insular, creepy, spooky, stuck in the past etc - and some of that is true. But there is another side to Roosevelt Island which is at the forefront of urban planning and the use of new and exciting technology for the betterment of those who live, work and visit here....
Here's another exciting example.  Last Tuesday, I assisted Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Director Jonathan Kalkin in organizing a meeting to discuss how to bring Solar Powered Hybrid Ferries to the New York City Waterfront including Roosevelt Island. Mr. Kalkin provides the details.
On Tuesday at the Interferry Conference in Brooklyn New York, I had the great honor of introducing Solar Hybrid Ferries to Roosevelt Island and New York City. Present for the meeting was representation from the EPA, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney's office, Borough President Scott Stringer's office, Assembly member Micah Kellner, City Council member Jessica Lappin, Tom Fox Of NY Water Taxi and members of the Durst Organization, and RIOC President and VP Leslie Torres and Fernando Martinez. Dr. Robert Dane, CEO of Solar Sailor gave a presentation of his patented Solar Sail technology that could be added to present ferries or put into new ones.

I was invited to the Department of Energy to an EPA conference about a month ago to discuss some of the Green Initiatives on Roosevelt Island. During my discussions there with a number of DOE, NYSERDA, and EPA representatives, I asked if there was ferry funding at the DOE or anywhere else. They said I could get funding for a green ferry, but even they said they weren't aware of any in the United States.

I did some research and contacted Dr. Dane of Solar Sailor of Australia. His ferry technology is used in Australia, and now Shanghai and Hong Kong. A Hybrid Solar Ferry resolves most of the ferry issues that plague New York City. First and foremost, most ferry systems are simply not profitable for the operator. Fuel costs are very high and therefore the price per ride has to be as well. If the price per ride is too high it is not competitive with other forms of transportation, even if its more convenient. Even with a high price ticket without a subsidy most ferries can't work.

Almost all forms of public transportation are subsidized. However ferries are not and it has been difficult to find a ferry that is profitable without a large subsidy. Also there is always a concern of the ferries keeping their engines idle in docks and adding pollution to the water and air around it. A Hybrid/Solar ferry runs up to 8 knots with zero emissions and can travel with hundreds of passengers. Like a Toyota Prius it can run faster if needed on diesel, but the overall fuel savings is 30, 40 and sometimes 50 percent. If the ferry goes on short distances like across our East River, it can run on zero fuel and when sitting in the dock will have zero emissions. Also it is very quiet.

After researching a number of green projects the main barrier is always the upfront capital cost. The operating cost once built is much cheaper, but it takes time to get the return on investment. That is why I contacted the EPA who have funding to pay for this. NYSERDA also has a program for development projects.

We are looking at a number or options for docks. Currently there is a dock near the Roosevelt Island Tram that would be a great addition to our transportation options and critical for island emergencies. I thought it would be a good idea to get everyone together to discuss this initiative and we had a great meeting thanks to the help of our great representatives and RIOC team. We set up a working group to research the project and to develop a proposal for the EPA and NYSERDA this year. It is really great to see Roosevelt Island not only lead the city, but now the USA in green projects.
Here's more on Solar Powered Hybrid Ferries being used in Hong Kong Harbor


You Tube Video of Solar Power Hybrid Ferry

and an experimental hybrid solar ferry for St. Lucia in the Caribbean

For more on plans regarding the New York City Waterfront, here's a message from the Department of City Planning:
Help Plan the City’s Waterfront

The Department of City Planning is continuing its extensive public engagement process to develop Vision 2020: The New York City Comprehensive Waterfront Plan with a public meeting on Tuesday, October 12th, 2010. Vision 2020 will establish the city’s long range vision for a 21st Century waterfront, identifying opportunities for improvement and the strategies needed to realize this new vision. The meeting will present Vision 2020’s goals and draft recommendations and provide an opportunity for public comment. We urge you to be part of the process by reading the draft recommendations online at nyc.gov/waterfront, where you can also submit comments online, and attending the October 12th meeting:

Tuesday, October 12th, 6 p.m.

Rosenthal Pavilion, NYU Kimmel Center for University Life

60 Washington Square South, 10th Floor, New York, NY
NYC's Draft Waterfront Plan has this to say about Roosevelt Island (Page 18):
  • Support continued evaluation of effectiveness of tidal energy and strengths of river currents
  • Provide in-water recreation access, such as a boat launch
  • Support an improved Southpoint Park with a waterfront esplanade

Director Of Engineering Job Opening With Roosevelt Island Operating Corp- Oversee Building and Infrastructure Projects

 RIOC Engineering Director Tom Turcic and Staff At Octagon Field Re-Opening

It was reported during the September 27 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Operations Committee meeting that Engineering Department Director Tom Turcic was retiring and that a search for a new Engineering Director was under way.

Do you have the interest, skill and experience to be the head of RIOC's Engineering Department? If so, this Monster job listing may be for you.
The Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation of the State of New York is a New York State Public Authority with the responsibility for the development, maintenance, safety and transportation on Roosevelt Island, New York.  Located in the East River between Manhattan and Queens counties, Roosevelt Island is a vibrant community with residential housing, commercial properties, public parks and recreational areas.

Reporting to the Vice President of Operations, the Director of Engineering will direct and oversee all engineering, design, construction and maintenance activities on Roosevelt Island.  The Director of Engineering will also provide strategic engineering leadership and direction in support of the continued capital improvement and maintenance of Roosevelt Island through the performance of the following duties and functions...
Job requirements include:
Min. twelve (12) years of construction and engineering/architectural experience
Knowledge of facilities management and mechanical equipment.
Knowledge of public sector procurement process and contracting requirements.
Min. of eight (8) years of managerial or supervisory experience.
Bachelors Degree in Engineering or Architecture.
and the salary range is $90,000 - $105,000.

Here's more information and how to apply,

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Frank J. Jordan - Husband, Father, Newspaper Man & Recent Roosevelt Island Resident Passes Away - Condolences To Family & Friends

Image of Frank J. Jordan From Washington Post

Received the following message from the son of a Roosevelt Island resident who recently passed away. Mr. Dan Jordan writes:
I am sad to tell you that my father, Frank J Jordan, passed away on September 20th in his RI apartment at 30 River Road. My father lived on RI for only 8 months and so was just getting to know the island and the people.  I suspect people noticed him because of his walking stick, and resemblance to Moses (or Gandalf depending on your age and background)....
Below is Mr. Jordan's Obituary:

Frank J Jordan - Obituary
Frank J. Jordan, former broadcast journalist for NBC News and journalism professor, died of natural causes at his home in New York City on September 20. He was 83 years old.

Mr. Jordan worked for NBC News for more than two decades. He was Bureau Chief in Washington, D.C. from 1968 through 1976, spanning the administrations of Presidents Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford and Jimmy Carter. Mr. Jordan served as executive producer of NBC’s national news coverage for most of the major national events of the time, from the assassination of President John F. Kennedy in 1963, to the conclusion of the Viet Nam War, to President Nixon’s historic overtures to China and Russia, through the Constitutional confrontation arising from the Watergate scandal and President Nixon’s eventual resignation. During the 1960s and 1970s, Mr. Jordan was also in charge of NBC’s election coverage, representing the network at the Republican and Democratic presidential nominating conventions and directing election night coverage. Mr. Jordan helped pioneer the network’s use of national exit polling to predict election results.

In 1979, after retiring from NBC, Mr. Jordan became the Dean of the School of Communication at American University in Washington, D.C., revamping the curriculum to help prepare journalism students for the new technologies revolutionizing news gathering and reporting. His particular passion, and favorite subject to teach, was the First Amendment and the importance of news media in American society. In 1986, a long-time affinity and affection for the U.S. Virgin Islands led Mr. Jordan to become the first Dean of the newly formed School of Journalism at the University of the Virgin Islands on St Thomas. For years after retiring from that position, he continued to contribute articles and columns to the local newspaper and to record commentaries for local radio stations, often lambasting local government inefficiencies and injustices. In 1992, Mr. Jordan was appointed to the U.S.V.I. Territorial Status Commission which led the public debate on the 1993 referendum concerning whether the islands should seek statehood, remain a territory, or declare independence. (Mr. Jordan quietly favored independence, but the status quo won).

Frank J. Jordan was born in Johnstown, Pennsylvania on May 21, 1927 (or, as he liked to remind people, on the day Charles Lindbergh landed in Paris after his solo flight across the Atlantic). The son of a radio announcer for the-then United Press Radio Network, Mr. Jordan survived the 1936 Johnstown Flood on the second story of his home with his mother and younger sister.
Upon graduation from high school in 1944, Mr. Jordan enlisted in the Army. After specialized studies at the University of Minnesota trained him to be a crack Japanese interpreter, the Army promptly assigned him to Italy, where most of the fighting had ceased. It was in Italy, however, that he began his journalism career as a 17 year old writer for The Stars and Stripes.

Upon returning home, he earned a Bachelors Degree from the University of Pittsburgh in 1949 and a Masters Degree in Journalism at Columbia University in New York City in 1950. He then joined United Press International and was sent to Southeast Asia to report on combat operations during the Korean War, as well as events in Japan and the newly emerging nation of Indonesia.

Early on in his tenure with NBC News, Mr. Jordan was based in Chicago and produced a wide variety of stories for the network, including on-scene coverage of school desegregation milestones in the South. After moving to Washington, D.C., he also earned a law degree from American University. He was a member of the White House Correspondents Association and the District of Columbia Press Association. Mr. Jordan’s career in journalism spanned the globe, and later in life he continued to be an avid traveler, visiting many far-flung countries in recent years.

His wife, the former Patricia Clifford, died in 1990. A younger sister, Terri Jordan of San Jose, California, also predeceased him. Mr. Jordan is survived by his sister Nancy Jordan Berriman of Wayne, Pennsylvania; his son F. Daniel Jordan of New York City and his daughter Mary Lou Jordan of Cambridge, Massachusetts; three grandsons, Patrick and Simon Jordan, and Nathan Harris; and six nieces and nephews.
Mr. Jordan's son Dan adds:
Being an old newspaper man, who did understand new media, my father would get a kick out of his obit appearing in the Roosevelt Islander blog.
Condolences to the family and friends of Frank J. Jordan.