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Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Roosevelt Island Is Not Immune To NYC Homeless Crisis - Residents Association Asks RIOC PSD Chief What Can Be Done After Receiving Info From Parent Witnessing Public Urination?

Roosevelt Island is not immune from the NYC Homeless crisis nor do we have any solution to this difficult issue of balancing individual rights and personal privacy with protecting the health and welfare of the community.

For example, yesterday a Roosevelt Island parent reported:

Yesterday as I was walking across the lawn by the subway, the homeless man who sits by Starbucks opened his pants and started peeing right in front of me on one of the trees (by the former sports bar). When I confronted him about it, and asked why he doesn’t use the bathroom at Starbucks, he cursed and yelled back, and told me to call the cops. I called Public Safety, filed a report, and followed him until the officers arrived (he went back to Starbucks, where all of his luggage was). Later that afternoon he wasn’t there, but his luggage was still standing by one of the tables.

I understand Starbucks is allowing him to stay there. I also understand that the shelter system is screwed up. But, This is not only disgusting behavior, it is also a health and hygiene issue. And as a mother of two little kids, I don’t want them to be exposed to this.

Is there anything we can do?
The Parent added the response from thr Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department was:
... that they’ve spoken to the man about urinating in proper places (that’s after I called them to talk to him). And since they did not see it themselves, there’s not much more they can do at the moment. But they will ‘keep an eye’ on this guy now that they know what he looks like and where he usually hangs out. That’s it.

The homeless issue was discussed during last evening's Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee (PSC) meeting with RIOC Public Safety (PSD) Chief Kevin Brown and Deputy Chief Anthony Amoroso

According to RIRA PSC Chair Erin Feely-Nahem:
... the community has to understand is that there is only so much they can do because they do have rights if they're not doing anything. Yes, if he was urinating and a Public Safety Officer saw it, the Public Safety Officer can give a summons....
I asked Chief Brown what PSD can and cannot do about the homeless issue.

Chief Brown said:
... If we don't observe the violation, we can't give a summons. If they're acting out in their behavior we will address it....
I followed up asking if there was any way to get them help, Chief Brown replied:
... We can call the homeless outreach unit and have other people respond...


Here's more info on the NYC Homeless Outreach Unit,



the full RIRA PSC discussion of homeless issue on Roosevelt Island



and from the Coalition For The Homeless.

Tuesday, October 22, 2019

Long Delayed Roosevelt Island Tram Elevator Project To Resume Construction End Of October - Soil Was Not Structually Sound For Original Foundation And Time Needed For New Design And Permits Says RIOC

The man in this picture taken yesterday,


like many Roosevelt Island residents, is wondering what is going on with the long delayed Roosevelt Island Tram elevator project?

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) announced in April 2016, that work on the new $6.1 million Tram Elevators would begin in September/October 2016 and be completed in one year.

But work did not start until May of 2018 and then was soon halted after discovering the soil was not structurally sound for the foundation originally designed for the project.

After changing the foundation design and obtaining new approvals from the NYC Departments of Transportation and Buildings as well as the MTA, RIOC reported during the October 15 Operations Advisory Committee meeting, that work on the 2 new Roosevelt Island Tram Elevators will begin by the end of this month, replacing the existing cramped and often broken elevator.


Here's RIOC Project Manager Prince Shah updating the RIOC Board on the Tram Elevator project.



According to Mr Shah, the the cost of the project has increased to approximately $7 million and should be completed by December 2020. Mr. Shah added that the foundation design changes will not effect anything seen above ground.

 Image of GC Eng Eng & Associates Tram Station Elevator Rendering From April 12, 2016 CB 8 Preeentation

Below is the Roosevelt Island Tram Station elevator plan presented to April 12, 2016 meeting of CB 8's Roosevelt Island Committee by GC Eng & Associates. According to the presentation. the new Roosevelt Island Tram Station will have:
  • Two New Glass Elevators
  • Increased User Capacity
  • ADA Compliant Elevators
  • Enhanced Destination Visibility
  • Greater Reliability & Maintainability  
  • Increased Lighting and Security
  • Improved Circulation

Roosevelt Island Thanks Nancy & Worth Howe For Contributions To Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance Performing Arts By Renaming Theater In Their Honor - You're Invited To October 26 Celebration

For the last 35 years, The Roosevelt Island Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (MST&DA) has offered high quality live theater performances and classes to the Roosevelt Island Community. This Saturday, October 26, MST&DA is honoring the husband and wife team of Nancy and Worth Howe for their efforts in building the theater and contributions to the local performing arts community.

According to MST&DA


Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation is naming the Cultural Center theatre The Howe Theatre in honor of Nancy and Worth Howe. Nancy and Worth were part of the design and planning committee appointed by RIOC in 1990 to oversee the construction of what is now The Cultural Center at 548 Main Street. They were instrumental in helping physically to build the theatre. They are being honored in a plaque unveiling ceremony on October 26th from 3:30-4:30pm at the Cultural Center, 548 Main Street.

“Renaming the theatre in honor of Nancy and Worth Howe is a fitting tribute to two people who expanded the role of Main Street Theatre and Dance Alliance and influenced creativity in our community,” said Susan Rosenthal, President and CEO of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (RIOC). “We at RIOC are honored to continue to support MSTDA.”

The Howe's served as directors for Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance from 1983-2005. Diana Brill, the founder of MST&DA, brought Nancy and Worth to Roosevelt Island to develop MST&DA into what it is now. They served on the executive staff of MST&DA from 1984-2005. "Nancy and Worth have a long history on Roosevelt Island and have impacted so many lives here over the years they were at MST&DA. Their contributions to Roosevelt Island performing arts are immeasurable and we are thrilled to honor them and their service to the community," says Kristi Towey, Executive Director of MST&DA.

The Howe's now live in Los Angeles, where they continue to work as professional actors. They are returning for this special event, along with many alumni and former MST&DA performers. As she prepared to leave MST&DA in April 2005, The Wire asked Nancy how she would like to be remembered. "I really cared about doing the very best, getting the very best out of the children, doing the very best shows for the adults and the kids, making them rise to the occasion, making them work as hard as they could to do the best job they could, and respect me and know that I respect them and love them at the same time."
More info on MST&DA at their web site and Facebook page.

Monday, October 21, 2019

Sponsored Post - You're Invited To Weill Cornell Medicine & NY Presbyterian Free Health & Wellness Fall 2019 Seminars - Tuesday October 22 What's The Deal With The Pancreas, October 29 How To Identify & Treat Stroke, November 12 Headache Matters And November 19 Keeping Your Liver & Gut Happy

You're invited to the Weill Cornell Medicine & NY-Presbyterian Free Health & Wellness Fall 2019 Seminar Series.

October 22 What’s the Deal with the Pancreas? Keeping it Healthy & When to See a Doctor

SriHari Mahadev, MD, MS

Allison Yang, MD, MPH

October 29 -  ACT FAST: How to Identify & Treat Stroke

Saad Mir, MD

Cinthia Holland, RN

November 12 -  Headache Matters: When Should I Worry & How Do I Get Control?

Susan W. Broner, MD

Alina Masters-Israilov, MD

November 19

Digestive Health and Weight Management: Keeping Your Liver & Gut Happy

Carolyn Newberry, MD

Sonal Kumar, MD, MPH

Time 6:30–8 pm

Place - All seminars held at:
Uris Auditorium
Meyer Research and Education Building
Weill Cornell Medicine
1300 York Avenue (at 69th St.)
All seminars are FREE and open to the public. Seating is available for 250 people on a first-come, first-served basis.

American Sign Language interpretive services will be provided at all seminars.

If you require a disability-related accommodation, please call 212-821-0888 and leave a message.

According to Weill Cornell Medicine Government & Communty Affairs:
Health & Wellness Seminars

Weill Cornell Medicine (WCM) physicians actively educate their communities beyond standard appointment times. Wellness seminars, as well as presentations in collaboration with community-based organizations, create forums for attendees to learn about particular health topics, ask questions and engage in a communicative dialogue with our physicians. The WCM Division of Government & Community Affairs organizes these critically important opportunities to educate and expose common questions, misconceptions or concerns....
Watch the video below to learn more about Weill Cornell Medicine's public outreach programs



including the Health & Wellness Seminars and STEM Education.

More info on the Weill Cornell Medicine/NY Presbyterian Fall 2019 Health & Wellness Seminars.

Friday, October 18, 2019

RIOC President Susan Rosenthal Roosevelt Island Community Report - Southpoint Park East River Waterfront Access Project, Blackwell House Opening Not Yet, Motorgate Repairs, Electric Car Charging Stations, New Tram Elevator Construction Starting, Youth Center Renovations Nearly Complete, Halloween Parade & Town Hall With Nellie Bly Memorial Artist

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Susan Rosenthal reported to the October 17 RIOC Board of Directors meeting on the following subjects:

  • Southpoint Park project to open up both East and West Side sides between fence and East River giving access to the waterfront.


    More info here.
  • Blackwell House - no definite date yet when it will reopen. FDNY Fire inspection scheduled in middle of November and Department of Building inspection as well. Exterior painting currently being done. Hope to open by end of year but can't be sure.
  • Motorgate repairs waterproofing phase 1 done. Phase 2 to begin
  • Electric Car Charging Stations will be on 4th level by entrance to Motorgate Garage
  • New Tram elevator construction will start at end of October
  • Youth Center renovation will be completed next month.
  • Halloween Parade will march from Capobianco Field to Sportspark on Main Street
  • December 3 Town Hall with artist about the Nellie Bly Memorial.
Here's Ms Rosenthal's October 17 Roosevelt Island President's Report

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Gallery RIVAA Opening Reception For New Exhibit - Inversions: Contemporary Art Inspired By The Architecture of Louis Kahn Saturday October 19, Featuring Painting, Sculpture, Film, Dance, Installation And Sound By 24 Artists


Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA invites you to the opening reception for it's new exhibition - Inversions: Contemporary Art Inspired By The Architecture of Louis Kahn on Saturday October 19.

According to Gallery RIVAA
Dear all,

You are cordially invited to the opening reception of:

Inversions: Contemporary Art Inspired by the Architecture of Louis Kahn

Group Exhibition

Curated by Melinda Wang October 19 – November 11, 2019

Date: October 19, 6-8pm

Address: Gallery RIVAA 527 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York

Opening Reception: Saturday, October 19, 6-8pm

Gallery Hours: Wednesdays and Fridays, 6-9pm;

Saturdays and Sundays, 11am-5pm

Best wishes,

RIVAA


According to press release for the event:
MW Projects is pleased to present Inversions: Contemporary Art Inspired by the Architecture of Louis Kahn, a group exhibition featuring painting, sculpture, photography, film, dance, installation and sound by 24 artists. The exhibition will be on view from October 19 through November 11, with a public opening reception on Saturday, October 19, 6-8pm. The gallery is located on Roosevelt Island, a short walk to Franklin D. Roosevelt Four Freedoms State Park, Kahn’s only design in New York City.

The visual artists are: Dara Alter, Richard Bottwin, Graciela Cassel, Tim Gowan, John Greig Jr., Carrie Johnson, Andres Koort, Stephanie Land, Arne Maasik, Jamie Martinez, Marisol Martinez, Gelah Penn, Urmo Raus, Jonathan Rider, Tariku Shiferaw, Sara Silks, Helen & Sandra Sirp, Christopher Stout, Nicholas Szymanski, Margaret Inga Urias, Michael Wolf and Audra Wolowiec.

The exhibition also includes a site-specific sound piece by Micah Frank to listen to while walking between the gallery and Four Freedoms Park. The exhibition is organized by MW Projects, with support from the Consulate General of Estonia in New York and the Estonian Ministry of Culture.

Architectural historian William J.R. Curtis wrote, “Kahn’s architecture is full of inversions: masses which suddenly seem weightless, materials which dissolve into immateriality; structures which reverse load and support; rays of light which reveal the realm of shadows; solids which turn out to be voids.” Known for combining Modernism with the weight and dignity of ancient monuments, Kahn used simple shapes and simple materials to design preternaturally beautiful structures that sought to create transcendent experiences. He believed that structure, space and light must always be in harmony, and that it is through the material that we can understand the immaterial and universal.

Taking these concepts as cues, the artists in the exhibition created works that explore the different “inversions” for which Kahn is known. Each work in the exhibition considers the dualities of material and immaterial; logic and intuition; heavy and light; light and shadow; or presence and voids, and how these dualities balance and co- exist.

Inspired by Kahn’s multi-disciplinary approach, the exhibition will include an evening of dance and poetry, a film screening and a music listening event. Details for these events will be posted at www.MWProjects.art and on social media channels.

About Louis Kahn

Born in Estonia in 1901, Louis Kahn was one of the most important and influential architects of the second half of the 20th century. His work and writings represent a profound search for the very meaning of architecture. His designs include Four Freedoms Park (New York, NY), the Salk Institute (La Jolla, CA), National Assembly Building (Dhaka, Bangladesh) and Phillips Exeter Academy Library (Exeter, NH).

About MW Projects

MW Projects is a cultural production and art advisory firm dedicated to bringing contemporary art to historic sites, non-traditional venues and liminal spaces. We work with emerging and established artists to transform environments and encourage dialogue about contemporary art and culture. For more information, please visit www.MWprojects.art.