Saturday, April 22, 2017

Happy Earth Day From Roosevelt Island, the International Space Station & NYC March For Science

Click on full screen icon for an incredible view.

More on today's Earth Day March for Science here.

Friday, April 21, 2017

RIOC President Expects Repairs Completed And Sportspark Pool Re-Opens By May 1, Aging Infrastructure And Neglect Cited As Cause Of Problem

Reported April 9 that the long delayed re-opening of the renovated Roosevelt Island Sportspark facility

Sportspark Image From Google Maps

took place Monday April 10 but that the Sportspark Pool

remained closed until further notice because of a leak discovered on Saturday, April 8.

Some good news. Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Susan Rosenthal reported to the April 20 RIOC Board of Directors meeting that repairs to the pool are underway and almost completed. Ms Rosenthal expects (hopes?) the pool will be open by May 1.

According to Ms. Rosenthal:
 ... We had emergency electricians and emergency plumbers come in....

....There's been alot of work done over the last week to get it fixed. I know alot of people have been disappointed....

One thing we learned is we can't just respond to problems. We have to look at these old buildings and other infrastructure around the Island and do work before there is a problem. That's going to be challenging for us.

It's been tough but I apologize to the community.... It's not the fault of anyone other than it's an old building. Things have not been updated over the years.

Sponsored Post - Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket Bonus Savings Card Diamond Rewards Loyalty Program April 21 To May 4 - Get Exclusive Offers And Earn Points On Hundreds Of Items To Be Redeemed On Next Order

The Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket

Diamond Rewards customer loyalty program items for April 21 - May 4 are now available .

Examples of featured items purchased from April 21 - May 4 that earn you big points include
  • Orville Redenbacher's Popcorn earn 100 points,
  • Banquet Chicken Dinner earn 75 points,
  • Bounty 2 Pack Big Roll Paper Towels earn 50 points,
  • Oscar Mayer Franks earn 25 points and
  • many more shown in flyer below.

According to Gristedes:
Start Earning Points Today

Join the Diamond Rewards loyalty program today! Get exclusive offers and earn points on hundreds of items! Get $5 Coupons for every 500 points earned, redeemable on next order.

Look for the Diamond Rewards label on the shelf or the product
If you have a Gristedes Bonus Savings Card and provided your email address, you are automatically enrolled in the Diamond Loyalty Program.

You can sign up for a Gristedes Bonus Savings Card online or in store - just make sure you give your email address and whether you are a new or existing Bonus Savings Club member, in order to be eligible for the Diamond Rewards Loyalty program.

Also, Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket invites you to check out their:
  • Groceries, 
  • Organic & Gourmet, 
  • Snacks
  • Meat, 
  • Fresh Produce, 
  • Seafood, 
  • Frozen, 
  • Deli &;
  • Fresh Bakery
Department Offerings for April 21 - April 27

Gristedes representative Bob Capano invites Roosevelt Island residents to check out their various product departments for all of your shopping needs.

Don't forget the 10% Roosevelt Island Seniors Discount on Tuesday and Wednesday and Sign Up for the Gristedes Diamond Loyalty Rewards Program.

More Gristedes Supermarket information available at their web site, Facebook Page and Twitter feed.

Good News Again, Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan This Weekend, That's 18 In A Row - E Train Service Too

Assuming today's subway service problems are fixed, the MTA reports there will be Roosevelt Island F Train service

to and from Manhattan this weekend.

That's 18 weekends in a row of Roosevelt Island F train service to and from Manhattan. The last Roosevelt Island weekend F train service disruption was December 16-19, 2016.

E Trains run via the F in both directions between W 4 St and 21 St-Queensbridge Weekend, 11:45 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Apr 21 - 24

Long Waits At The Roosevelt Island F Train Subway Station And Long Lines At Roosevelt Island Tram This Morning Due To 7th Avenue Station Power Loss

According to the MTA:

and the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
MTA has advised that due to a power outage there is NO "F" train service in either direction. Please plan your travel accordingly and visit or call 511 for more information.
Roosevelt Island residents report:
The line for the North side of the tram is past sports park.
The queue for the tram is really long now.
The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse adds:
Similar situation happened March 9 and January 9.

UPDATE 3:15 PM - Statement from NY Governor Andrew Cuomo's office:
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today directed the New York State Department of Public Service and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority to conduct an immediate investigation into Con Edison’s equipment failure that led to significant delays across MTA New York City Transit subways this morning.

New York City Transit subways experienced a loss of station power at the Seventh Avenue Station in Manhattan due to a Con Edison equipment failure. The outage resulted in the loss of signals, escalators, communications and station lighting. MTA New York City Transit immediately deployed MTA generators to the station to restore the signals allowing trains to bypass the station. Service has resumed with residual delays.

"The loss of power due to a Con Edison equipment failure during the morning rush hour caused a cascading effect and impacted the lives of thousands of commuters. Simply put, this was completely unacceptable and I am directing the Department of Public Service and the MTA to conduct an immediate investigation into the Con Edison equipment failure, the cause of the outage and the response to it. The New York City subway system is the lifeblood of the city and a critical means of transportation for millions of people, which is why we are making unprecedented capital investments into modernizing the system. The MTA will continue to deploy emergency resources to address the short-term issues, and our investigation will address all aspects of today’s events to get to the bottom of what happened."

Thursday, April 20, 2017

Sponsored Post - Island Kids Roosevelt Island 2017 Summer Camp Registration Now Open - After School Programs, Tumbling & Art, Baby Group & Toddler Play Too

Island Kids is a not for profit organization providing support to the families of Roosevelt Island by offering affordable, quality enrichment opportunities and support groups. Programming includes enrichment classes for babies, toddlers and pre schoolers, support programs and workshops for parents and caregivers, a summer camp program for children aged 4-10 and an After School Program at PS/IS 217.

Island Kids stands firm in its mission to serve the entire Roosevelt Island Community and therefore offers scholarships to those who might otherwise not be able to participate in our programs.

Island Kids Registration and scholarship information can be found on our website at

Please email with any questions

Roosevelt Island Getting $2.9 Million RI Bridge Bike Ramp To Street Announces NY Governor Andrew Cuomo - RIOC,Cornell Tech And Federal Funding Got It Approved

As reported in October 2015, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC), with the assistance of Cornell Tech representatives were exploring the possibility of increasing safety on the Roosevelt Island Bridge Helix

by adding a bike ramp from the Bridge to the street:

... During last evening's (October 13) RIOC Operations Advisory Committee meeting (audio web cast here), RIOC President Charlene Indelicato reported the results of a preliminary Helix Ramp study by Cornell Tech and their engineering consultants AKRF. According to Ms. Indelicato, the Cornell Tech/AKRF study concluded that fixing the Motorgate Escalator for use by bicycle riders was not an option but there is a possibility of installing a bike/pedestrian only ramp from the Motorgate Helix to the street level at the East Promenade....
Roosevelt Island will get the bike ramp. NY State Governor Andrew Cuomo announced yesterday:
$112.2 million in funding has been awarded to 81 projects that support bicycle and pedestrian enhancements and improve air quality across New York. Funding supports projects that include multi-use bicycle and pedestrian facilities, new accessible sidewalks that adhere to regulations under the Americans with Disabilities Act, improved access to public transportation, and enhanced roadway safety...

... The funding, which will provide up to 80 percent of the cost of each project, is made available through the Federal Highway Administration and administered by the New York State Department of Transportation. Selected through a competitive solicitation process, awardees presented plans that will increase options for non-vehicular transportation, reduce vehicle emissions or traffic congestion, or both. Including additional public and private funding, these projects will leverage nearly $233 million in construction and operational enhancements that will improve air quality, promote walking and biking, expand public transportation access, and boost tourism across the state....
Among the projects being funded are:
... $2,963,705 to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation to construct a bike-only ramp to the Roosevelt Island Bridge.
I asked the current Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Susan Rosenthal:
... Can the project go forward now or is more money needed?
Ms Rosenthal replied:
$2.963!! The project is going forward NOW. We will be preparing the scope of work for the RFP seeking a structural engineer. The agreements regarding the grant are yet to be seen, however. Note that before the grant, we spoke to a number of officials who expressed an interest in the project and we intend to revisit those interested parties. We are so excited about the project!
Below are renderings of the fully funded Roosevelt Island Bridge Bike ramp from RIOC.

Roosevelt Island's Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney added:
The Roosevelt Island community has long been waiting for a bike-only ramp to allow cyclists an easy and safe connection to the Roosevelt Island Bridge. Thanks to Governor Cuomo, nearly $3 million in federal dollars are being allocated to this ramp so the connection can become a reality. Cyclists will no longer have to carry their bikes up flights of stairs, or risk their safety by sharing the helix ramp with cars. It’s great that the state, federal government and community are working together to make Roosevelt Island a safer, more accessible place.
During the March 29 Cornell Tech Roosevelt Island Town Hall Meeting, Cornell Tech's Assistant Director of Government & Community Relations Jane Swanson reported on the proposed Roosevelt Island Bridge Bike Ramp.

Good job by RIOC and Cornell Tech.

Now, let's see if RIOC can get a qualified bidder for the RFP to do the bike ramp project.

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Voting Results Are In For RIOC Board Nominee Candidates - 951 Roosevelt Island Residents Cast Ballots But Objections Raised To Validity Of Election Process

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Government Relations Committee Chairperson Joyce Short reports on the results of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Director Nominee Candidate election

held April 18-19.

Image Of Southtown RIOC Board Director Candidate Nominee Voting

According to Ms Short:
The RIOC VOTE is in!

It literally took a village..... 30+ volunteers, at 12 sites, who devoted 90+ man-hours of labor!

951 Roosevelt Island Residents cast their ballots for their preferences for RIOC Board Members. Here are the results:

1. Lydia Tang 558 Votes
2. Brian Bower 470 Votes
3. Mark Block 464 Votes
4. Michael Shinozaki 432 Votes
5. Eduardo Janey 429 Votes
6. Howard Polivy 287 Votes
7. David Kraut 235 Votes

Thanks for the hard work of each and every volunteer who made this process possible!

Aaron Hamburger
Barbara Brooks
Barbara Parker
Bill Weiss
Chris Gasman
Cindy Wilkerson
Dave Evans
Dimaura Cole
Emma Felix
Fereil Sanders
Ike Nahem
Joan Markey
Judy Knorton
Kasia Krause
Laura Hussey
Lorraine Altman
Mary Cavanaugh
Matthew Katz
Melissa Wade
Mickey Rindler
Nancy Bredice
Nellie Finnegan
Noah Keating
Patrice Herlihy
Pia Doane
Rochelle Liss
Sally Hamburger
Scott Piro
Sheldon Brooks
Scott Piro
Vicky Feinmel
Wendy Hersh

Special thanks to Margie Smith who helped educate our candidates and the community about the importance of this vote. And extra appreciation to Bill Weiss and Laura Hussey who gave additional time to help tally the voting results.

And special thanks to the Managing Agents at 455 Main St, Rivercross, Manhattan Park, Westview, Island House, Octagon and Roosevelt Landings for their help in providing tables and access to their lobbies for this important vote!
Video of the April 12 Meet the RIOC Board Nominee Candidate night is here.

Howard Polivy, David Kraut and Michael Shinozaki are long time RIOC Board Directors currently serving. Mr. Polivy and Mr. Kraut did not give their permission to be placed on the election ballot and were not participants in any pre-election publicity.  Mr. Shinozaki did agree to participate in the election. All the other nominee candidates actively participated in the election process.

The election is not without controversy. Claims of ballot fraud, which I am not going to get into right now, have been raised. Click here to read all about the election controversy in this comments thread.

Main Street Retail Master Lease Amendment With Hudson Related And Two New Diesel Red Bus Purchases Among Items On Agenda For April 20 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Board Of Directors Meeting

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors will meet tomorrow evening, April 20 at the Cultural Center (548 Main Street).

Image Of RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting

Prior to the start of the RIOC Board meeting, there will be a public comment period. Sign up here to speak at the meeting.

Among the items on the Agenda is the amendment of the Master Retail Lease with Hudson Related and the purchase of two new diesel Red Buses.

The Master Retail Lease item was added to the Agenda late today. No information yet what that may be about.

Below is the Agenda:





5:30 P.M.[1]

I. Call to Order

II. Roll Call

III. Approval of Minutes

1. March 23, 2017 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)

IV. Old Business

New Business

1. Ratification of Insurance Binders for FY 2017-18 (Board Action Required)

2. Authorization to Amend Contract with Major Systems Mechanical Corp. for the Boiler Installation and Heating System Improvements at Sportspark (Board Action Required)

3. Authorization to Amend Contract with Henrich Equipment Company, Inc. for Petroleum Bulk Storage Regulation Compliance Services (Board Action Required)

4. Authorization to Enter into Contract with New Flyer Industries, Inc. for the Purchase of Two Diesel Buses (Board Action Required)

5. Authorization to Amend Master Sublease Agreement for Main Street Retail Space with Hudson Related Retail LLC (Board Action Required)

6. President’s Report

7. Committee Reports

a. Audit Committee

b. Governance Committee

c. Operations Advisory Committee

d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee

8. Public Safety Report

VI. Adjournment

The RIOC Board Meeting will commence following a public comment period. The public comment period is not part of the meeting.
RIOC's Transportation Manager Cyril Opperman sent this March 10 memo in support of the bus purchases to RIOC Directors:

One June 23, 2016, the Board approved the purchase of two diesel buses. This was due to an aging bus fleet that will need to be phased out over time. The purchase of the two new buses has alleviated several issues, however, supply shortages and higher repair costs still exists with a predominantly older bus fleet. As part of an allotted 6-year budget plan, from 2016 through 2022, all of the current aging buses on the fleet will be replaced.

At the June 23, 2016 Board meeting, it was communicated to the board that pure diesel bus models cost less and need fewer repairs than hybrid buses. Moreover, there is no significant difference in carbon footprint emission between diesel and hybrid buses. It is for these reasons that RIOC will once again focus on acquiring pure diesel buses. Detailed emission information from the United States Environmental Protection Agency Office of Transportation and Air Quality’s Certificate of Conformity can be found in the chart below:

Procurement Process

The RIOC Operations Department contacted three commuter bus manufacturers. Two manufactures (New Flyer and Nova) offered their prices, while the third (Gilig) did not submit a price. Below is a summary of the bids received, including company, model, price and other relevant information. These bids were evaluated based on specifications desired, intercompany history and price.

*All models are two door and wheelchair accessible

Recommended Vendor

New Flyer Industries Inc. is our recommended vendor, as they offer competitive pricing, meet all of the Department of Operations requirements and RIOC has a long standing business relationship.

New Flyer is the leading manufacturer of heavy-duty buses in the U.S. and Canada, headquartered in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada. RIOC and New Flyer have been conducting business together for over 20 years, starting with a purchase of four buses in 1994. A New Flyer bus that was purchased in May of 1994 was put out of service on November 3rd, 2009, lasting over 15 years. Moreover, the two most recent purchases have performed exceedingly well. All this highlights the reliability and durability of New Flyer buses. In addition to the proven quality of the buses, New Flyer’s knowledgeable mechanics impress RIOC and strengthens our recommendation to award the contract to the company.

RIOC’s Department of Operations requests an authorization for an amount not-to-exceed $430,694 per bus, for a total price of $861,388 towards the purchase of two buses from New Flyer.
UPDATE 4/20 - The Main Street Master Lease Amendment is regarding a proposal from Hudson Related for installing Roosevelt Island branding

Images Of Hudson Related Proposal From RIOC April 19 Memo

and directional Wayfinding Signage.

Images Of Hudson Related Proposal From RIOC April 19 Memo

Here'e April 19 Memo from RIOC President Susan Rosenthal to the RIOC Board describing the proposal.