Saturday, April 13, 2019

Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival A Total Transportation Mess - Residents Furious That Tram, Subway, Ferry, Bridge Overwhelmed By Visitors

Roosevelt Island residents are furious today over the long lines and delays at the Tram, Subway, Ferry and bridge caused by the overwhelming  number of visitors going to the Cherry Blossom Festival today at the southern section of the Island - FDR Four Freedoms Park

and the West Waterfront Promenade next to Cornell Tech.

Will have much more on this but for now social media has the info.

Received reports that lines for the Roosevelt Island Manhattan Tram station at Second Avenue extended almost to 3rd avenue and lines at the Roosevelt Island station were equally ridiculous.

Huge crowds at the Ferry too. Resident Stephen Quandt shares these photos

and reports:
No crowd control at the ferry! The mates had to yell at the crowd to move. The line went well back to the street

Roosevelt Island activist Frank Farance warned of potential transportation problems earlier this week due to the Cherry Blossom Festival in emails to the event organizers, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) and Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) and as a comment to this post. According to Mr. Farance:
... The Manhattan side of the Tram might become congested. Even with 2 trams in operation, that's about 2000 people per hour (combined) and the Tram lines are certain to flow into the streets, sidewalks, and off-ramp traffic of the Queensboro Bridge? Is NYPD helping manage crowd control on the Manhattan side?

The Roosevelt Island subway station needs crowd control during arrival and departure to make sure the station itself does not become overcrowded. For example, the entrance to the station should be kept clear so people can leave the station, but that might be a problem if 10,000 people are on the north side of the checkpoints.

RIOC should ask for NYPD to assist, including their counter-terrorism staff: with such a high density of people in a confined space, this really requires much more help than what RIOC Public Safety Department can provide with a staff of approx 50-55 officers for a crowd of over 20,000....
The performances at the Rooseelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival were very good

but RIOC needs to examine whether the disruptions in transportation are a price worth paying for this event in the future.

Stay tuned for more.


UPDATE 11:20