Friday, April 5, 2013

Final Report From Acting RIOC President Don Lewis - Condolences To Public Safety Officer Michael's Family, Reopening Of Lighthouse Park This Week, Pier NYC Waterfront Restaurant May Not Open, Roosevelt Island Tram Access Gate, iDig2 Learn Earth Day Celebration And More

As reported yesterday, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) has a new permanent President, Charlene Indelicato. Acting RIOC President Don Lewis

will return to his previous position as RIOC General Counsel. At last night's RIOC Board Meeting, Mr. Lewis gave his final President's Report to the Board

and  sends the following report to Roosevelt Island residents.
I am deeply saddened to begin this week’s column by reporting that Frensheria D. Michael, an Officer of the Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department, passed away on Sunday, March 31. Officer Michael served in the PSD for 14 years and was widely respected by her fellow officers and the Roosevelt Island community. Officer Michael was a consummate professional and a truly wonderful individual. Her amazing presence will be dearly missed. (For additional information on Officer Michael, please see RIOC's statement.)

Pier NYC Update

We are aware that Pier NYC was an Island attraction that was thoroughly enjoyed last year by many Island residents and visitors. Given the overwhelming success and support for the waterfront establishment, we would very much like to see it happen again this year. Unfortunately, due to damage to the wooden portion of the Pier as a result of Superstorm Sandy, as well as the recent collapse of the paved portion of the Pier, we cannot guarantee that the site will be safe for opening in May. We will continue to work diligently in an effort to overcome the unfortunate obstacles we have encountered.

Reopening of Lighthouse Park

As you likely know, Lighthouse Park sustained heavy damages from Superstorm Sandy and has been closed since last Fall. Our Maintenance and Grounds crews, with help from outside contractors, worked through the winter months so that the park would be open for warmer days in the spring. This week we will open the park for residents and island visitors. We will need to keep a small portion of the park closed until both pedestrian bridges and lighting around the Lighthouse are replaced, which we expect to be done in the next few weeks.

Tram Access Gate

Certain members of our community – parents with strollers, folks with bicycles, and disabled residents – have informed us that they are having difficulty getting through the Tram access gate. We are looking into permanent solutions, but in the meantime, we are posting an extra Tram employee at the gate during morning and afternoon rush hours when the need is greatest to help people get through the gate and onto the platform quickly and safely.

iDig2Learn Earth Day Celebration

Island residents are encouraged to come to iDig2Learn’s “Love Your Block, Love Your Earth” event on Saturday, April 20, beginning at 10:00 am and continuing throughout the afternoon. As an Earth Day celebration for kids and adults, the event will include flower planting and other activities to beautify our island, with a special focus on the plaza in front of Gristedes and Motorgate. For more details or to volunteer contact

This event is made possible by a grant from the Citizens Committee for NYC and NYC Service in collaboration with the Roosevelt Island PTA, the RI Youth Program, P.S./ I.S. 217, RIOC, RIRA, Gristedes, Urban American, the Hudson Companies and Starbucks. A special "thank you" goes to Island resident Christine Delfico who spearheaded this project.

Mommy and Me Swim Classes

Sportspark is offering new Mommy and Me swim classes in a ten-week program starting on April 3. The classes will take place on Wednesdays from 10:30 to 11:30 am. Designed for babies and toddlers aged 6-to-36 months, the sessions will feature dipping, floating, splashing, songs, games and other fun-filled activities. The cost is $5.00 per family on a drop-in basis.

Motorgate Gallery Opening

I would like to thank all of the folks who attended last month’s Grand Opening of the Motorgate Gallery, including Gallery RIVAA President Tad Sudol, RIOC staff, RIOC Directors Margie Smith and Howard Polivy, the editors of Clog magazine who were on to launch their newest issue and, of course, the artists and residents of Roosevelt Island. We have received a good deal of positive feedback about the Gallery, and we are delighted that it will be a showcase of our artistic community for years to come.

The Votes Are In…

We have tallied votes for the films the community would like to see this year during RIOC’s Summer Outdoor Movie Series at Southpoint Park. The following wonderful mix of old favorites and new blockbusters were chosen: Top Gun (1986), Coming to America (1988), Brave (2012), Star Wars (1977), The Hunger Games (2012), and Breakfast at Tiffany’s (1961). Thank you to everyone who voted. Stay tuned for an announcement of the dates for each screening. We’re looking forward to another great summer of movies and festivities at Southpoint Park.

Friends of Southpoint Park

The Friends of Southpoint Park are looking for new volunteers to help with weeding at the park this spring and summer. There will be an orientation for new volunteers on April 13. If you are interested, please contact April Ward at

Following last night's Board meeting, RIOC Director Margie Smith and others thanked Mr. Lewis for his service as Acting RIOC President during difficult time for the Corporation.


rilander said...

PSD Keith Guerra should have issued a statement about the death of this wonderful women but he didn't. This is just one more reason to show why he is a lousy manager. He should have at least shown respect to officer Michael and her family. This further proves what a horrible manager and representative of the RI community this man really is!