Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Don't Risk Your Life, Don't Risk Someone's Else's Life, Wear A Mask Says Governor Cuomo - RIOC Mask Guidelines For Roosevelt Island

This is why it's important to wear a mask/face covering in public when you can't keep your social distance away from others.

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
RIOC Advisory: Mask Guidelines - July 7th, 2020

As New York City enters Phase 3 of New York Forward, it is important for all of us to take time to learn about the various aspects of the face mask/covering policy, as per the law.

What is a face mask/covering?

A face covering is anything that covers the nose and mouth including cloth masks, surgical masks, scarves, and any other covering that serves as a barrier to prevent breathing in airborne particles.

Who must wear a face mask/covering?

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

RIOC Announces Temporary Pause Of Roosevelt Island Southpoint Park Shoreline Restoration Project To Provide Community With More Info - Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright To Host July 14 Virtual Town Hall With Acting RIOC President For Community To Ask Questions On Project

A Roosevelt Island resident asked yesterday:

I'm trying to better understand the posters around talking about 320 trees being cut down in Southpoint Park to make way for more walking paths. There seems to be plenty paths down there already. Do you have more information on this plan?

Today, I asked Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Acting President Shelton Haynes and the RIOC Board of Directors:
Any statement from RIOC regarding status of Southpoint Park shoreline project and petition from Wildlife Freedom Foundation opposing it?

Assembly member Seawright signed the petition.

Any comment on charge that 325 trees will be destroyed

Will the project be delayed or is it still on schedule. When will work begin?

Acting RIOC President Shelton Haynes replied this evening:
The goal of the Roosevelt Island Southpoint Park project is to repair the erosion of the east and west seawalls and is critical to ensure the health and safety of the public while visiting Southpoint Park. The proposed plan was reviewed and approved by several federal, state, and local agencies charged with protecting the environment, including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI)– Fish and Wildlife Services, the National Marine Fisheries Services (NOAA), and the New York State Departmental of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC). The RIOC Board of Directors unanimously approved the plan earlier this year.

New York Public Library Starting Limited Service At Several Locations - But When Will The New Roosevelt Island NY Public Library Branch Finally Open, Entrance Signage Is In Place

According to the New York Public Library:

NYPL Updates: Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

June 25, 2020 Update: Limited Reopening Starting July 13
As part of New York City’s reopening, The New York Public Library is beginning the careful, phased process of returning limited service to its physical locations. Starting on Monday, July 13, we will begin by offering grab-and-go service at eight library locations. At each of these locations, patrons will be able to access a limited area for returns and to pick up materials that they’ve reserved....
But residents are asking the same question about the long planned new Roosevelt Island Public Library as was asked in January 2020:
When will the New York Public Library (NYPL) open it's new Roosevelt Island branch location on the first floor of 504 Main Street replacing the current overcrowded and dilapidated branch?

Plans for the new Roosevelt Island NYPL branch library were first announced way back in July 2012 but construction did not start until October 2018. At that time, we were told to expect substantial completion of the new library by December 2019. As we know, that has not happened....
Today, I asked the NYPL:
I’ve noticed a lot of activity going on inside the construction of new Roosevelt Island library.

Any update on plans for the opening of Roosevelt Island NYPL?

A NYPL spokesperson replied:
... As a result of COVID, all capital projects in New York City were paused in March, including the work at Roosevelt Island Library. However, we are in conversation with our government partners about which projects can resume and happy to report that work has restarted at the branch. We expect the project to be completed in the next couple of months. The Library will notify patrons when the branch is scheduled to reopen.
Below is NYPL January 2016 presentation on the new Roosevelt Island branch library

Roosevelt Island Library - FINAL Presentation 1/2016

and video of the presentation.

Monday, July 6, 2020

iDig2Learn Presents A Virtual Roosevelt Island Workshop, Learning To Forage For Edible Food In Your Neighborhood With Meadows + More Tama Matsuoka Wong Wednesday July 8 - RSVP With Your Questions

Roosevelt Island resident and iDig2Learn founder Christina Delfico reports:

Wednesday, July 8th from Noon to 1PM

Join iDig2Learn to meet the amazing author and forager Tama Matsuoka Wong for a virtual workshop on foraging.

"Bringing Outdoors In: Learning to Forage for Edible Food In Your Neighborhood

RSVP to with the subject line: Forage 2020

If you have been enjoying more outdoor walks and noticing plants underneath your feet and wild berries on trees and wondering if they are edible, this is the workshop for you.

And please include your foraging question when you RSVP to iDig2Learn's founder at - we want to hear what you are wondering about!

This is a virtual iDig2Learn online experience - login information sent upon RSVP.

Special thanks to Open Space Institute for hosting this iDig2Learn workshop.
More on foraging with Tama Matsuoka Wong at her Meadows and More web site and this video.

Wishing you happy and tasty foraging.

Roosevelt Island Elected Officials Convene CB 8 Coler Task Force To Monitor Nursing Facility Treatment Of Residents, Shield Whistleblowers From Retribution And Increase Health & Hospitals Corp Transparency - Watch Video Of Virtual Coler Town Hall Questions From Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer To Coler CEO Robert Hughes

Roosevelt Island residents have been greatly concerned with reports of inadequate treatment received by residents at NYC Health & Hospitals Corp (H&HC) Coler Skilled Nursing and Rehab Facility (Coler) during the Coronavirus Pandemic as reported in the NY Post

and expressed by Open Doors Poet/Coler resident Jay Molina

On June 25, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer hosted a Virtual Town Hall to discuss issues and answer community questons regarding treatment of Coler residents, or lack thereof, at the Roosevelt Island Skilled Nursing Facility during the Coronavirus Pandemic. Also, attending the Virtual Coler Town Hall were elected officials including Roosevelt Island NY State Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, Coler Chief Executive Officer Robert Hughes, Coler resident Vincent Pierce, Manhattan Community Board  8 Chair Alida Camp and concerned Roosevelt Island residents.

Assembly Member Seawright began the Town Hall reading a June 25 letter sent from elected official to H&HC President Mitch Katz. According to this excerpt of the letter:
... we are constituting a community-based Coler Task Force under the auspices of Community Board 8, chaired by Alida Camp, CB8’s Chair and a professional mediator to be called upon when necessary. The Task Force will be composed of Coler residents and families, local stakeholders and elected officials. The Task Force will identify issues of concern and obtain timely responses from Health + Hospitals senior management, facilitate tours of Coler for members of the committee and elected officials, and ensure healthcare workers or residents who speak out are shielded from any retribution. We ask that senior-level officials from H + H be designated to work with the task force to ensure the highest communication and cooperation. Many of Coler's patients and staff are people of color, and we are particularly concerned about any disparities in care or treatment

We believe that the Task Force will play a valuable role in working with Health + Hospitals to bring clarity to the operations at Coler, especially in COVID testing and in the understanding of protocols. We believe that the Task Force will move us toward our mutual goal of protecting patients, supporting staff, and resolving issues at Coler.
Here's full video of the Coler Town Hall.

Sunday, July 5, 2020

660 Roosevelt Island Residents Received Covid-19 Nasal Swab Test At Last Week's 4 Day Mobile Pop Up Site - Any Results Yet?

660 Roosevelt Island residents lined up and

received the Covid-19 nasal swab test at the NYC Health & Hospital Corp (NYC H&HC)

Mobile Pop Up site under the Motorgate Helix from Monday June 29 to  Thursday July 2.

According to a NYC H&HC representative, the number of Roosevelt Island residents getting the Covid-19 test were:
133 - Monday June 29
173 - Tuesday, June 30
183 - Wednesday July 1
171 - Thursday July 2
Total - 660
80 tests daily at a mobile site is considered an excellent response.

I've requested the number of positive test results. Will update when info received.

More info at this prior post and here's briefing from NYC Council Member Ben Kallos

on the Roosevelt Island Covid-19 mobile pop up testing site.

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Happy July 4 Independence Day America From Roosevelt Island - Despite Coronavirus Pandemic, America Celebrates Ideals Of The Declaration Of Independence

This year's July 4 Independence Day celebration is more subdued due to the Coronavirus Pandemic but we can still wish Happy Birthday America and celebrate the ideals of the Declaration of Independence.

Image of John Trumbull's Declaration of Independence from US History

Friday, July 3, 2020

Sponsored Post - Only 3 Days Remaining For Roosevelt Island Riverwalk Park Affordable Housing Lottery July 6 Deadline - Submit Your Application Before It's Too Late, Tell Your Roosevelt Island Friends Too

The July 6 deadline to apply for the 313 available units in the soon to open Roosevelt Island Hudson Related Riverwalk Park (460 Main Street) Affordable Housing Building lottery is only 3 days away.

Image Of Riverwalk Park

If you're interested and meet the eligibilty criteria, apply now at Housing Connect.

As previously reported:
... Riverwalk Park will be 100% affordable for individuals and families that earn between 40-165% of the Area Median Income. Fifty percent of the units are reserved for current residents of Manhattan Community Board 8....

... Riverwalk Park will have 313 affordable units including apartments ranging in size and price of:
  • Studios $506 - $1,961
  • 1 Bedroom,$648 - $2,468
  • 2 Bedroom &$791 - $2,974
  • 3 Bedroom $909 - $3,432
Roosevelt Island residents are part of the 50% Community Board 8 preference.

On June 30, NYC Council Member Ben Kallos hosted an online Riverwalk Park information session with representatives of Hudson Related describing the application process and answering questions from interested community members.

Watch the video of information session to learn more about Riverwalk Park and

this step by step video showing how to apply using Housing Connect.

Sponsored Post -Roosevelt Island Farmers Market Every Saturday At Good Shepherd Plaza Featuring Wide Variety Of Locally Grown Healthy And Delicious Tasting Fruits, Vegetables & Much More - Social Distancing Rules Maintained

The Roosevelt Island Saturday Farmers Market is open every Saturday, including the Fourth Of July, at Good Shepherd Plaza

from 6 AM to 3 PM rain or shine.

The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market features a wide variety of Locally Grown, Healthy and Delicious tasting fruits, vegetables and much more.

Israel Wengerd of Wengerd Farms adds:
Come to the Farmers Market. It's an exciting time of the season for local homegrown fruits and vegetables.

Support your Local Farmers, Eat Healthy!
Social Distancing practices will be maintained by Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department and Market Staff. Face Coverings are required to enter the Farmers Market and gloves will be given out before entering.

The Farmers Market accepts credit and EBT cards for payment too. 

Sponsored Post - Check Out Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket July 3 - July 9 Product Offerings, Specials & Sales Items - Online Shopping, Delivery Options, Digital Coupons & Social Media Facebook And Instagram Too

The Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket

invites you to check out their July 3 - July 9 Weekly Flyer for  Product Offerings, Specials & Sales items.

Click here to visit the Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket web site for online shopping, delivery options, digital coupons, weekly flyer and more.

Follow Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket on Facebook

Roosevelt Island Transportation This July 4 Weekend - F Train Service To And From Manhattan, Tram Passenger Limits At Discretion Of Operator, Ferry Service And Citibike Too - Wear Your Masks To Travel Safely For You And Others

According to the MTA, there is Roosevelt Island F Train Service to and from Manhattan this weekend.

Thursday, July 2, 2020

More Roosevelt Island Covid Restart - Starbucks Patio Outdoor Seating Is Back, Can't Beat The View

Amalgamated Bank Closing Roosevelt Island Main Street Branch In September - No Other Bank On Roosevelt Island

Amalgamated Bank

announced with a flyer on it's Main Street entrance door that their Roosevelt Island Main Street branch will be permanently closing

on September 26 of this year. The Amalgamated Bank Roosevelt Island branch opened in July 2009.

There is no other bank on Roosevelt Island.

The Westview retail space is controlled by building ownership and is not part of the Hudson Related Main Street Master Leasehold.

Roosevelt Island Community Activist Frank Farance Gives Testimony To NY State Attorney General Letitia James Hearing Investigating NYPD and Public Interactions During Protests in the Wake of George Floyd’s Death

According NY State Attorney General Letitia James:

The Attorney General’s Office is charged with investigating New York Police Department’s (NYPD’s) response to recent protests, including any allegations of misconduct....

... As part of this investigation into interactions between NYPD officers and civilians during recent protests following the killing of George Floyd, Attorney General James, joined by special advisors to the investigation, former United States Attorney General Loretta Lynch and founding Director of New York University Policing Project Barry Friedman, held a virtual public hearing on June 17 and June 18 to examine the nature and details of these interactions.

Members of the public, government officials, and community leaders were invited to provide written and oral testimony. In total, there were more than 300 submitted pieces of written testimony and 17 hours of oral testimony from individuals present at protests, elected officials, legal groups, and community organizations. There were 52 speakers on the first day of the hearing, including 20 members of the public, 17 government officials, and 15 community organizations. The second day of the hearing saw 48 speakers, with 44 members of the public, two government officials, a community organization, and a law enforcement organization.

Among those giving written testimony to the June 17-18 hearings was Roosevelt Island community activist Frank Farance.

Mr Farance summarizes his testimony below

Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Appointment Of Shelton Haynes As Acting RIOC President And Approval Of Annual Report Among Items On July 2 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Board Of Directors Meeting Video Conference - You're Invited To Watch And Ask Questions During Public Comment Session Prior To Meeting

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors will meet 5:30 PM Thursday, July 2  via video conference. You can watch the Board meeting and ,ask questions or share concerns about Roosevelt Island during the opening Public Session before the start of the meeting. Sign up to speak here.

Among the items on the Agenda are:

Image From RIOC

 Mr Haynes is scheduled to deliver a President's report as well. Will he address any of the issues relating to the June 19 dismissal of former President Susan Rosenthal based upon allegations made by an employee that Ms Rosenthal made inappropriate racial and sexual remarks and that RIOC senior leadership did nothing to stop the behavior? According to the employee's complaint which was found to be substantiated by a 7 day NY State Governor's Office investigation:
... My experience of working at RIOC for the last several years have been toxic as we've experienced offensive racial comments and jokes of a sexual nature by Ms. Susan Rosenthal, RIOC's Chief Executive Officer/President. I've witnessed the lack of regard for employees as senior leadership continues to make excuses and play a blind eye on these troublesome issues....
Here's the July 2 RIOC Board of Directors meeting agenda.