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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Hipster Musicians Performing At Roosevelt Island F Train Station Today - They're Pretty Good

Subway street musicians performed today at the Roosevelt Island F Train station today. According to the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse:

They sound pretty good. Hope they come back.


Islanderx2 said...

Listened twice to the retail report and could not make out very little of what was said. Is it possible to have it posted? I know, if I was that interested, I would have been at the meeting, but sometimes you just can't be there. Thanks.

YetAnotherRIer said...

"These four floor apartments will fill the affordable rental quota. "

How sad that those quotas can be fulfilled by giving them to one organization that uses them for its own needs instead of giving the public a fair chance.

Carl Wilson said...

This is a giant loophole that should be addressed (& never will). Esp in a neighborhood that has lost thousands of units of affordable housing, games like this shouldn't be tolerated.

CheshireKitty said...

This was the problem with ST from its inception. How can the buildings leased to the hospitals for housing their staff, possibly be considered "affordable housing" - or fulfilling the requirement for "affordable housing?" The leased buildings or floors are exactly what they they say they are: Leased buildings or floors of buildings, which the hospitals can then proceed to rent apartments therein at any price to their staff, and their staff ONLY. That is most certainly not the equivalent of affordable housing open to all.

CheshireKitty said...

It is unacceptable that the Catholic Parish has been robbed of its major source of funds to support its efforts to help the poor - the thrift shop - because of Mr. Kramer's greed in insisting on charging a rent that is not in line with what should be charged to a non-profit.

There are numerous residents who have no place to recycle items they no longer need, and many of their perfectly sale-able though used goods are now adding to the landfills - a disaster for the environment and to the Church's effort to help the poor.

Also, there are numerous residents who have no place to find inexpensive goods, such as pants, shirts, and shoes, without spending $5 round-trip to travel to Queens to find a thrift shop at which to shop. For the poor, Mr. Kramer, the $5 R/T fare is a big deal, or didn't that ever occur to you?

Is there another neighborhood that treats its less well-off residents this way?

Trapping the poor on an isolated island with no way to shop for affordable clothing and housewares, furniture and appliances, because the Lord of the Manor - Hudson/Related - who now seems to even own the sidewalks on RI - deems the thrift shop too "down-scale" for our community?

Why should the residents of RI be disadvantaged to this extent: Not have a single place to purchase a T-shirt, or a pair of jeans - that a poor resident can afford? Why should the poor residents, of which there are so many on RI - be forced to pay $5 R/T to travel into Queens to find a thrift shop when everyone else in NYC can easily access neighborhood thrift shops without paying $5 to get to them? Why was our one affordable shopping location shut down, and now, after it's shut down, Mr. Kramer is still holding the Church hostage by not signing a lease that will keep the rent on a new space for the thrift shop affordable if not at is prior level - that is, a write-off for the good of the community?

It is bad enough that Mr. Kramer isn't exactly providing affordable housing for the general public at 7. He can't continue to live in a world of his own and consider RI an island populated by yuppies. Mr. Kramer: There are large numbers of poor people on RI! Just as there are millions of people just getting by in NYC in general. You and your developer friends seem blind to that fact. Can you please wake up and at least allow the Catholic Church to sign a lease on an empty space on Main St now - given that 504 rehab is going to take several years to be completed - as a write-off, to benefit the Church's efforts ministering to and helping the poor?

CarnetBleu said...

So tired of this type of thievery. They always find a way

CarnetBleu said...

How did this happen, are there more details? Who allowed this? Was there voting? Where can we complain?

CheshireKitty said...

Read the GDP here You can see the difference in the ratios between Northtown and Southtown.

Also, the lawsuit RIRA brought when ST was about to be developed gives a good timeline of development decisions by RIOC

There is more about the Island's history and so forth in the 2014 Columbia study

Basically, money talks - and when decisions about ST were made,the Republicans were in power at City Hall and Albany. Politically things could not have been more different than when NT was developed.

CarnetBleu said...

Thank you, Kitty. Will read up on it

CarnetBleu said...

I am sorry, that is a lot of material. This has been happening since 1999? I see that RIRA sued RIOC but how would they have known the affordable housing was eventually to be given to the hospital employees?

CarnetBleu said...

I am more interested to find out what is happening about the Southtown guidelines not being followed. "a. 10-20% for the persons and families whose incomes do not exceed 50% of the prevailing median income ..." Who is being held accountable for breaking this contract?

CarnetBleu said...

from the link you sent: "

Finally, I find no support in the record for petitioners' claims that
the Hudson/Related site plan does not conform to the GDP requirements
concerning the allocation of subsidized housing and accommodations for
families with children." This was at the time and could not be proven because Southtown was not yet built.

CheshireKitty said...

There is a reference to hospital housing at ST in the RIOC enabling legislation. I'm trying to find the link to the RIOC Act. The idea was the hospital housing @ ST satisfied the GDP requirement for affordable housing. I never agreed since the hospital housing is certainly not open to all.

CheshireKitty said...

The RIOC Bylaws only govern the organization of RIOC itself

Here is legislation to update the Act, but the legislation was never signed into law . However, you can see the 1984 Act herein. But there doesn't seem to be anything about hospital housing in this document either. Maybe the entire Act is not referenced in this proposed legislation(?).

CarnetBleu said...

The planning document does mention the hospital housing ON TOP of all other housing. What I don't understand is how did "they" eliminate all that housing that was to be available specifically for people who earned no more than 50% of the Manhattan median income (which would be under 25K). At the same time, that pdf seems to only represent a "plan" and it does not look like a legal contract which is why they were able to evade offering that 20% promised housing to the very poor. If you find a contract, let's take them to court.

CheshireKitty said...

This is a research project that probably must start @ RIOC. I wonder if RIOC would even help. There are undoubtedly documents/contracts that were signed that specify the mix - how was the mix justified or was the GDP simply ignored? What I was told was the hospital buildings = the affordable housing called for in the GDP. I think this is answer as far as the powers-that-be are concerned. Probably the developer lined up the hospitals first, then presented his plans to RIOC. RIOC then decided to accept the idea that hospital housing = affordable housing, since the hospitals subsidize those apartments for their professional staff. There is no affordable housing @ 7 although a few floors have been leased to MSK. Mr. Kramer said in a interview when 7 was topped out that 8 would have "a lot" of affordable housing - but that could mean once again hospital housing. Or maybe H/R will extend the definition of affordable housing on RI to include Cornell housing that might be built @ ST.

Carl Wilson said...

I'm still perplexed @ the concept of affordable housing being handed over to a corp entity such as a hospital. I've never heard of this happening before as there are so many state/city procedures that are required for each & every potential tenant to go through to be deemed qualified for the housing. So is the hospital putting their staff/students through that procedure? Doubtful. This seems dubious @ best. With DeBlasio's affordable housing effort in the news a lot recently, this is something that needs to be looked @. This def isn't right.

CheshireKitty said...

The units are leased at a discount to researchers/post-docs/Fellows/etc. The affordable housing is made available to them (certain categories of professional staff) often, they aren't paid that much. The hospitals need to have staff in the area 24/7. And so, the reasoning is, the housing is a sort of perk, since it's leased at an affordable rent to categories of employees that might not be paid that much (although I'm not sure that's always the case). Since it's therefore affordable housing for the staff they need to have available/nearby 24/7, it's considered affordable housing.

It's really institutional housing. For all we know some apartments may not be leased at affordable rents, although the usual thing is staff gets a huge break on hospital housing (perk).
If you put in housing and any of the institutions that lease/own buildings on RI (WCMC, AMC, MSK) information immediately pops up on their housing options on RI and in Manhattan, including application forms. I'm sure every hosp has the same system - Mt. Sinai, NYU, and so forth.

The question on RI though is how is it that the requirement for affordable housing at ST fulfilled by the hospital housing? The usual answer to that question is that the housing is affordable/discounted by the hospital (perk) for the staff who occupy it - thus, it's considered affordable.

YetAnotherRIer said...

"The usual answer to that question is that the housing is affordable/discounted by the hospital for the staff who occupy it - thus, it's considered affordable."

Right. But it helps the hospital to keep its expenses low etc. etc. This is really not within the spirit of "affordable housing." Actually, it stinks to the sky.

Frank Farance said...

Mr. Wilson, Yes a loophole. It should be seen as an employee benefit, not affordable housing, because if the employment relationship ends, the employee loses the housing benefit. However, since we residents (even RIRA) are not parties to this contract, we have no "standing" to oppose it. RIOC has standing, but it unlikely RIOC will take any stance against H-R because, in essence, H-R "owns" RIOC. When I say "own", I mean it in the sense that H-R controls much of RIOC's revenues (Southtown, Main Street Retain) that keep RIOC afloat.