Saturday, April 21, 2012

Scenes From 2012 Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival

You Tube Video of Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival Musical Performance 

Although most of the Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossoms have already bloomed, today's Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival was a wonderful time for all those who attended. Here are some scenes from the start of the festivities.

Good job by RIOC Director/Child School Executive Director Sal Ferrera in stepping up and organizing the event this year.

Report From RIOC President Leslie Torres - Roosevelt Island Gets Some New Main Street Retail Stores, Tram Station Improvements Update, RI 311 See Click Fix, Cherry Blossom Festival & More

You Tube Video of RIOC President's Report 

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Lesie Torres sends the following report to Roosevelt Island residents.
Greetings Roosevelt Islanders. I have a few updates and announcements about projects that will continue to improve life on the Island, so I’ll get right to it…

Main Street Redevelopment Moves Forward

Plans for the redevelopment of the Main Street retail corridor are moving forward.  Last summer, RIOC signed a 30-year lease with Hudson Related Retail LLC to improve the vibrancy and lure new business for the 100,000 square feet of retail space on Main Street.  Now, Hudson/Related is preparing to move into leases with retailers that will provide the Island with an expanded array of goods and services.  Among the new tenants will be organic market Wholesome Direct, a Subway sandwich store and a wine store.  Additionally, the Gristedes grocery store will be remodeled.

We partnered with Hudson/Related for this project because of their excellent track record, including the wonderful work they have done developing the buildings and commercial space in Southtown.  Now, with their plans for a retail makeover on Main Street, the Island will have a beautiful retail corridor that offers quality services to the entire community.

SeeClickFix Provides Island with Custom Mobile And Online Platform

Earlier this week we announced our innovative partnership with SeeClickFix to allow Roosevelt Island residents to report non-emergency issues and request Island services through its online and mobile platform. Launched last year, the place-based reporting platform allows residents to document neighborhood concerns and improvements alike, ranging from potholes and graffiti to litter and broken streetlights.  During the soft launch phase, which began in July 2011, 70 requests for service and other issues were reported to RIOC via SeeClickFix.

We are leveraging this comprehensive platform to increase efficiency when responding to service requests and more efficiently improve the Island’s infrastructure.  SeeClickFix helps us empower the citizens we serve and encourage them to actively engage with each other, their neighborhoods, and us.

With the online and mobile reporting platform, residents can report quality-of-life concerns through service request categories via the RIOC website, custom mobile applications (iPhone, Android, Blackberry), and When submitting issues via mobile app, for example, residents can provide locational, descriptive, and photographic information as they see the issue in real time. Once the resident submits an issue, RI311, and anyone ‘watching’ the area will receive an alert. RI311 can then acknowledge the service request, route it to the proper department, and update the request—and residents following the issue—once it’s been resolved.

The partnership allows residents to not only report community issues, but also view, comment on, and vote to fix problems submitted by their neighbors. Citizens can even create their own “watch areas” to receive notifications about all issues reported in their community, enabling them to follow the progress of all service requests – not just the ones they report.

RIOC’s SeeClickFix website can be found here: and residents can download iPhone, Android, and Blackberry apps here:

Tram Station Updates

This week we started work on the Roosevelt Island and Manhattan Tram stations.  Work to modernize, beautify, and make the stations more comfortable for riders will be an ongoing project: We are doing our best to minimize disruptions for riders.

What can you expect when we're done?  I think the biggest change you'll see is an enclosure of the platforms and turnstiles.  For all of us who have taken the subway on a windy, cold day, we know what a relief enclosures will bring.  We'll also repair the stairs and repair, patch and paint the stations.

In the meantime, please use caution when walking near construction and have a safe ride.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Con Ed Bringing High Pressure Gas Service To Roosevelt Island For Arrival Of Cornell NYC Tech School - How Will It Impact Roosevelt Island Residential and RIOC Buildings?

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Leslie Torres noted in her March 24 report to the community:

... RIOC is in on-going discussions with Con Edison about their plans to supply increased gas services to Roosevelt Island with the arrival of the Cornell-Technion campus. We will be working with Con Edison to develop the best strategy for providing gas service for the long-term future....
RIOC Vice President of Operations Fernando Martinez discussed the Con Ed plans for high pressure gas service to Roosevelt Island, including the implications for RIOC and residential buildings, during the April 16 meeting of the RIOC Board Operations Committee meeting (full audio cast of the meeting)

Here's the discussion on High Pressure Gas Service for Roosevelt Island.

Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Walk With Historical Society and 2nd Annual Cherry Blossom Festival With Japanese Performers, Activities and Food On Saturday April 21

Image From Gallery RIVAA

Saturday is Cherry Blossom Day on Roosevelt Island. The Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) will be having a Cherry Blossom walk at 11 AM and Gallery RIVAA will be participating in the 2nd Annual Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival with Origami and Calligraphy workshops from 1 - 3 PM as well as Japanese performances on the waterfront promenade in Southtown. From Gallery RIVAA:
The 2nd Annual
Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival
Saturday, April, 21, 2112
1:00 to 3:00 pm 
The Promenade outside of the Roosevelt Island Subway Station

Masayo Ishigure & Miyabi
(Japanese string orchestra)
Kumiko Martin & Sancyokai
(Japanese string quartet)
Yoko Shirakata & Ichi Fuji-kai Dance Association
Samurai Sword (Presented By the Resobox Gallery)

Tea Ceremony Courtesy of Nihonwasou USA
Masako Inkyo - Calligrapher from Japan society Origami

Japanese food Presentation
By Mr. Ishkawa, Owner of Shiro of Japan &
Mr. Suzuki, President of Nishimoto Trading Co.,Ltd.
Ippodo Tea Company from Kyoto, Japan

With Special Thanks To Our
Community of friends on Roosevelt Island
The Child School, which is organizing this year's Cherry Blossom Festival, adds:
The festival will have something for both adults and children to enjoy. Attendance is free for performances. $5 admission to RIVAA gallery events. All proceeds will benefit Japanese relief efforts.

We look forward to seeing our neighbors and their friends at what promises to be a fun educational and tasty event. Please tweet, email, facebook and call the old fashioned way to invite your friends to come and join us and support our Japanese community and our neighbors on Roosevelt Island.

From RIHS:
Spring is in the air -- with all its glory -- on the Cherry Blossom Walk to be held on Roosevelt Island on Saturday, April 21, at 11:00 a.m.

Take a 75-minute tour of the beautiful cherry trees on Roosevelt Island and rejoice in the abundant color of the cherry trees in full bloom.
The tour, led by Judith Berdy, President of the Roosevelt Island Historical Society, offers close-ups on the Island's flowering trees for photographers and flower-lovers alike. This is the second in a series of two walks offering botanical and historical observations about Roosevelt Island. The Magnolia Blossom Walk was held on March 25.

For reservations, please contact or 212-688-4836. A donation of $10 to the RIHS is requested. Payment is accepted via PayPal at the RIHS website.

DIRECTIONS: Take the Tram at 59th Street and Second Avenue. Meet at the Visitor Center Kiosk at the Tram Plaza.

The Roosevelt Island Historical Society promotes awareness of our Island’s unique story and pursues preservation of its landmarks and artifacts. For more information, please visit
Here's what happened at the inaugural Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival last year including these scenes:

You Tube Video of Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival

Have a good time this weekend.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Roosevelt Island Tree Removed From Behind Island House For Safety Reasons Today - 3 New Trees To Be Planted In Its Place

Image of Trees Surrounding Island House via Google Maps  (for illustrative purposes, not depicting tree removed)

Received the following advisory from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
We were saddened today to have to cut down a very old tree that stood behind Island House. Unfortunately the tree's roots were damaged and it had become a safety concern.  After several inspections by Island House management and by experts that RIOC hired, we were informed that the tree would have to be cut down.  While we share the community's sadness over the loss of the beloved tree, we are pleased to announce that we will be planting three young trees in its place.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Of Directors Meeting Today - Approval of RIRA Public Purpose Funds Recommendations and Tram Station Improvements Change Orders Among Items On Agenda

Below is the Agenda for today's Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors Meeting.

APRIL 19, 2012
5:30 P.M.1

I. Call to Order
II. Roll Call
III. Approval of Minutes
1. March 1, 2012 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)
IV. Old Business
V. New Business
1. Authorization of Expenditure of Public Purpose Funds for 2012-13 (Board Action Required)
2. Authorization to Enter into Insurance Binders for 2012-13 (Board Action Required)
3. Authorization to Enter into a Contract with UtiliSave, LLC for Utility Audit Services (Board Action Required)
4. Authorization to Enter into a Contract with Bright Powers Inc. for Utility Benchmarking Services (Board Action Required)
5. Authorization to Issue a Change Order for Shea Carr Jewell, Inc. Contract for Engineering and Consulting Services for the Roosevelt Island Tram (Board Action Required � Materials to Follow)
6. Authorization of Extension of Contract with Henrich Equipment Company, Inc. for Petroleum Bulk Storage Regulation Compliance Services (Board Action Required)
7. Authorization to Issue a Change Order for Shawn Construction, Inc. Contract for Installation of Platform Enclosures and Concrete Repairs at Tram Stations (Board Action Required � Materials to Follow)
8. President's Report
9. Committee Reports
a. Audit Committee
b. Governance Committee
c. Operations Advisory Committee
d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee
10. Public Safety Report
VI. Adjournment

1 The RIOC Board Meeting will commence following a public comment period. The public comment period is not part of the meeting.
The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Purpose Funds recommendations are available at this previous post.

Organic Market Wholesome Direct, Subway Sandwich Shop and Island Spirit Wine Store Sign Leases For Roosevelt Island's Main Street Says Wall Street Journal - Also Child School Takes 504 Main Street Second Floor For Arts Center

 Image From Diabetes Mine

According to today's Wall Street Journal, Hudson Related has signed 4 new leases for Roosevelt Island's Main Street:
... New tenants include organic market Wholesome Direct, a Subway sandwich outlet and Island Spirit, which will be the only wine store on the island. The Child School is opening a 7,000-square-foot fine-arts center on an upper floor, which will include art, music, drama and dance studios.

A Gristedes grocery store that has been on the island for more than 20 years is also being remodeled. The grocery will be the guinea pig for a new concept for Gristedes, in which the store will also include boutiques, such as an organic market and a sugar-free market.

"This is going to be a new concept that we're experimenting with on Roosevelt Island," said John Catsimatidis, the owner of Gristedes. "We do reasonably well, but we could do better." 
Click here for entire Wall Street Journal article.

Stay tuned for more.

UPDATE 10:45 AM - Received this press release from Hudson Related:
Hudson Related Retail LLC, a joint venture between real estate development firms The Hudson Companies and Related Companies, today announced new retail leases, architectural  and streetscape improvements, and lease renewals that  will revitalize the Main Street retail corridor and bring new amenities to Roosevelt Island. Retail demand has outpaced supply in recent years as the Island has experienced population growth in newly constructed residential buildings and with anticipation of the new Cornell campus. 

David Kramer, a principal with The Hudson Companies said, “We are excited to announce the inaugural set of new leases and continue to bring additional amenities to Roosevelt Island and revitalize Main Street. These new retail tenants will bring much-anticipated and desirable services to the local community of 14,000 residents which, until now, had very few dining options on Main Street.  Residents will now have even greater option to shop, dine and relax without leaving the Island and we look forward to sharing additional tenant news in the near future.”

Retail leasing activity includes new tenants and renewals, including:
·         Island Spirts, a new wine and liquor store will open at 605 Main St. The island has been without a wine store for several years.
·         Wholesome Direct, a gourmet and organic natural food market at 530 Main St.
·         Europan Bakery Cafe at 503 Main St. will offer fresh gourmet foods, beverages and baked goods.
·         Subway Sandwich at 513 Main St. will offer sandwiches for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.
·         The Child School is opening a 7,000 square foot fine arts center at the upper floor of 504 Main St, which will be complementary space to the School’s other existing facilities on Roosevelt Island and will include art, music, drama and dance studios.

Hudson and Related also looks forward to two longstanding tenants renewing their leases:
·         Trellis Diner, a Roosevelt Island community institution, will have a ten year lease and is planning architectural and general improvements to the store.
·         Gallery RIVAA, at 527 Main St., will continue serving the community with arts events and gallery shows.

Additional transactions are also in the works for the next retail phase of leasing:
·         Hudson/Related and the New York Public Library have been pursuing capital funding necessary to create a new, state-of-the-art library branch on the ground floor of 504 Main Street.
·         The leasing team has been receiving offers for additional stores such as ice cream/candy; additional restaurants, florist and green desk office leasing.
·         Hudson/Related hopes to attract a pet store operator to the island as well as a frozen yogurt store.

"For too long, Main Street has been a ghost town, forcing Roosevelt Islanders to travel far and wide for the simple amenities most New Yorkers take for granted.  The innovative public private partnership between the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation and Hudson/Related that resulted in the retail master lease is revitalizing Main Street, giving Roosevelt Islanders great new shopping opportunities right outside their front door,"  said Assembly Member Micah Kellner (D - Upper East Side, Yorkville and Roosevelt Island) who played a key role in shaping and implementing the new retail master lease.
“Roosevelt Islanders have been clamoring for better shops and amenities for years. This makeover is a huge step forward and will help create a vibrant shopping corridor on Main Street,” commented Councilwoman Jessica Lappin.

"We're excited about more shops and stores on Main Street. Island residents and visitors deserve a great shopping experience and the amenities that come with living in a thriving community.  We signed a master lease with Hudson/Related because we were confident they had the expertise to develop a vibrant commercial corridor and we're thrilled that we'll soon see the first results of this partnership," said Leslie Torres, President of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation.

Hudson Related has received commitments from Gristedes to commence architectural and in-store improvements to the Roosevelt Island store, which are expected to be completed by October, 2012.

John Catsimatidis, CEO of Gristedes, added, “We’re excited about Hudson/Related’s efforts to revitalize Main Street, and in that spirit, we’re about to undertake a major renovation of our store, which has been serving the island for more than 30 years. We’re looking forward to bringing more organic foods, fruits and vegetables to the island at everyday prices.”

Hudson Related is planning design improvements to the storefronts along Main Street, which include new lighting, signage, way-finding elements, and materials to freshen the look of the Main Street corridor, which has not seen any major renovations or improvements in nearly 40 years.

The transformation of Main Street continues the retail enhancements began by Hudson and Related several years ago with the creation of the Riverwalk community on Roosevelt Island which includes six residential buildings. Retail amenities at Riverwalk include the Duane Reade, Roosevelt Island Day Nursery at Riverwalk, the Riverwalk Bar and Grill and an adjacent bagel store and deli, Nonno’s Focacceria, Fuji East, Swan Nails, Prestige Cleaning and Valet and Starbucks.

Hal Shapiro, a Managing Director at Winick Realty, has been responsible for most of the leasing efforts on behalf of Hudson/Related: “The revitalization of the Shops on Main will bring a new energy to Roosevelt island for the residents, tourists and workers.”

The retail renaissance is taking place within the context of other significant improvements to the Roosevelt Island neighborhood including the opening of the Louis Kahn-designed FDR Memorial in October, 2012 and the start of the $2 billion Cornell/Technion Campus for the Applied Sciences.

“All of these factors will strongly reinforce the vitality of the new retail corridor. Studies have previously concluded that island residents spend $0.86 of every retail dollar off-island, and we are committed to changing that dynamic,” said Kimberly Sherman-Stamler, Vice President of Related Companies.
UPDATE 11:20 AM - The new retail stores and improvements on Main Street would not have been accomplished without the persistence and hard work of former RIOC Director Jonathan Kalkin who first proposed the idea of a private sector Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder way back in 2007. Mr. Kalkin should be thanked for his role in helping to bring about these new stores.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Roosevelt Island Southtown Building 7 To Begin Construction In Early 2013 Says Hudson Related Developer David Kramer - Be Wary Of The Herculean Rock

 Future Construction Site and Home To Hudson Related Southtown Building 7

Roosevelt Island Hudson Related Southtown developer and Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder David Kramer told the NY Times:
... We were designated to build a new neighborhood at Roosevelt Island that we have named Riverwalk. It’s nine buildings and we’ve built six of them. We just started working on the design of the seventh building and we break ground early next year. It’s most likely to be a 21-story rental building at market rate....
... Last summer we were designated to take over the retail corridor — 33 stores, 100,000 square feet — that had been poorly managed over decades by the state agency, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation. The new leadership realized that it was important to have a private real estate operator oversee and manage the retail

So we want to turn that around and have a lot of plans to make it a bustling retail shopping corridor. I think six months from now it’s going to be a real dramatic change in the stores, the leasing and how it looks....
Click here for the entire NY Times 30 Minute Interview with Mr. Kramer.

I asked Mr. Kramer yesterday:
Is it true that Hudson Related will start construction on Riverwalk Building #7 in early 2013? Have you exercised your option with RIOC for the property?
Mr. Kramer confirmed that yes it was true.

I asked the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) for a comment and will update if and when it is received.

Wonder if the construction crew will encounter another Herculean Rock

resistant to destruction as happened during the construction of 415 Main Street in 2007:
A neighbor had been complaining about the unusually loud pounding sound directly outside his window coming from the new Related/Hudson Riverwalk Condo construction site. I had originally thought that the description of the noise as being unbearable and horrendous was due to not being accustomed to living so close to a new construction site. Apparently there is more to this because I am told that there is a very large boulder on the construction site that has proven to be almost indestructible to the construction crew. This Herculean piece of Roosevelt Island rock has resisted destruction by being broken up into little pieces by heavy construction equipment as well as an injection designed to shatter the rock, all for the benefit of future Roosevelt Island condo owners....
Here's what the 2002 Southtown construction site looked like.

Image of 2002 Southtown Site From Main Street WIRE Southtown Chronology

Do You Like Local History? Paid Summer Student Internship Available With Roosevelt Island Historical Society - What Was Blackwell's Island?

You Tube Video of What Was Blackwell's Island

Received the following message from the Roosevelt Island Historical Society.
Summer Intern Position

Do you enjoy local history? Join us on our unique historical island and learn more than you ever imagined about our history from the 1600’s to the present day.

Our archives contain many architectural histories, institutional records, personal stories and family histories of those who lived, worked, were hospitalized or imprisoned on the island. The reading will not be boring!!!

The RIHS is seeking a summer intern for the months of July and August.
  • Intern will assist with RIHS collection management and registration.
  • The responsibilities will include assisting with recording, cataloguing, organizing, and inventorying the society records and permanent collection, performing preventative care of items in storage.
  • Interns should be enrolled in an Historic Preservation, Art History, Museum Studies, landscape architecture and/or Local History Program. 
  • All level students will be considered.
Work will be on Roosevelt Island. This is a paid position The island is easily accessible by aerial tramway or F subway train.

This is a paid internship. Please visit our website: before submitting your cover letter and resume as a Word attachment to Resume limit 2 pages please
More on Roosevelt Island History from these previous posts.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Problems With Roosevelt Island Red Bus GPS Tracking Applications Recently - NextBus Working To Find Solution Says RIOC

On April 14, this report was submitted to RI 311 See Click Fix:
No current prediction - is nextbus broken? I have been unable to track the Red Bus for several days.
Yesterday, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) issued this advisory:
Please be advised that we are experiencing difficulties with third party "real time" applications for the Red Bus.

Applications such as "RBT Red Bus Tracking Application" and "RI Bus Tracker Android Application" are currently not operational.

We are diligently working with Next Bus and application developers to fix this issue as soon as possible.

In the interim, Real Time Red Bus information is available at


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
Here comes the Red Bus.

More on the Next Bus Roosevelt Island Red Bus GPS system from previous post way back in 2009.

Community Planning Board 8 Monthly Meeting On Roosevelt Island Wednesday April 18, Come Learn What The Community Planning Board Does - CPB 8 Roosevelt Island Cornell Task Force Meeting Postponed Until May

Community Planning Board (CPB) 8 will be holding its Full Board Meeting here at Roosevelt Island on April 18. I asked Roosevelt Island resident and CPB 8 member Jeff Escobar:
I understand Community Planning Board 8 will be holding it's April meeting on Roosevelt Island this Wednesday. As Roosevelt Island residents on the CPB do you wish to make any comment or statement that I can post on Roosevelt Islander Online.

Also, I thought the Cornell project would be a subject of the meeting but I do not see it listed on the Agenda. Any idea why not?
Mr. Escobar replied:
The meeting on Weds. is the monthly Full Board meeting where we will be attending to and voting on the various resolutions that the subcommittees have asked for adoption; as well as voting on our stance on the proposed New York Dream Act. This is not the Roosevelt Island task force meeting.

The Roosevelt Island task force meeting re Cornell has been scheduled for early May. If you go to the website, you will be able to find both the schedules and agendas for these meetings.

I would note that the Weds. meeting apparently been moved from the Chapel to The Child School/Legacy High School Auditorium at 6:30 pm.

I would strongly encourage all of our fellow Roosevelt Island Citizens to come and attend the Full Board meeting tomorrow to understand what Community Board 8 does, what we vote on and the role the Boards have in City governance. To review the agenda and see what will be voted on, they are encouraged to go to We will also be voting on a historic act that the Manhattan Borough President's office and local electeds are looking to sponsor, which is to enact the failed DREAM Act, but on a Statewide level (versus the struck down Federal level). If they wish to address the Board, voice concerns and/or to simply speak to the greater community, they are urged to do so and to ask to be recognized during the General Community time of the meeting. 
Mr. Escobar is also a member of the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA).

Below is the Agenda for April 18 CPB 8 Full Board Meeting at Roosevelt Island:
Meeting Date:
Wednesday, April 18, 2012 - 6:30pm
Meeting Location:
Child School/Legacy High School, Roosevelt Island
566 Main Street, Gymnasium
New York, NY

Public Session – Those who wish to speak during the Public Session must register to do so by 6:45 pm
Public Hearing: BSA Calendar No. 67-12-BZ, 1442 First Avenue, Block 1469, Lot 46, Second Avenue Deli- Application pursuant to Section 72-21, ZR for a zoning variance to permit the extension of an existing eating and drinking establishment in Use Group 6 on the first floor of the premises to the second floor in a building occupied on the third and fourth floors by residential uses and for the construction of a convenience stair between the first and second floors.
Adoption of the Agenda
Adoption of the Minutes
Manhattan Borough President’s Report
Elected Official’s Reports
Chair’s Report – Nick Viest
District Manager’s Report-Latha Thompson
Committee Reports and Action Items:
Street Life Committee-Domenico Minerva and Cos Spagnoletti, Co-Chairs
Transportation Committee-A. Scott Falk and Chuck Warren, Co-Chairs
Parks Committee-Margaret Price and Barbara Rudder, Co-Chairs
Street Fair Committee-Barbara Chocky and Hedi White, Co-Chairs
Landmarks Committee-David Helpern and David Liston, Co-Chairs
Old Business
New Business-Manhattan Borough Board Resolution in support of passage of the New York State Dream Act and Dream Fund

Nicholas Viest, Chair
More on the NY State Dream Act here.

Roosevelt Island Outdoor Tennis Court Permits Currently Not Available - RIOC Says Tennis Court Permits Will Be Available In Second Week Of May

 Image of Roosevelt Island Outdoor Tennis Club Gate Entrance

A reader sent in the following question regarding the use of the outdoor Roosevelt Island Tennis Courts:
I have been waiting to sing up for the outdoor courts tennis pass, but its has not been available on line as of yet and the gates are closed, do you know when can we apply for the pass since it will take 10days-2 weeks to obtain it,

thank you
The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) permit web page currently indicates:
Tennis permit applications for the 2012 season will be available in late- March. PLEASE DO NOT FILL OUT A FIELD PERMIT APPLICATION.
 I asked RIOC Vice President of Operations Fernando Martinez when the Roosevelt Island outdoor tennis court permits would be available. RIOC's Press Spokesperson replied:
The permits will be available the second week of May.
Tennis Permit Applications will be available online here.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Roosevelt Island's Version Of The River Cafe May Be Coming To Subway Pier This Summer - Dining Under The Queensboro Bridge Instead Of Brooklyn Bridge With Fantastic NYC East River Waterfront Views

NYC East River Waterfront View At Night From Roosevelt Island Subway Pier

Will East River waterfront dining be coming to Roosevelt Island's Subway Pier this summer? Imagine being able to sit, relax and eat some good food right next to the East River with these stunning NYC Skyline, Waterfront and Queensboro Bridge views in the evening

You Tube Video of NYC Waterfront Skyline at Night

and during the day.

Well, that may actually happen this summer because the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) has issued a Request For Proposals:
... for the sale of high quality food items on the west promenade of Roosevelt Island. The designated location will be licensed to one successful proposer....

... the aforementioned concession services for one (1) season from May 15, 2012 through October 15, 2012. Due to the pilot nature of this project, a longer term will not be considered at this time...

... RIOC envisions a quality, affordable specialty concession service that gives patrons a place to stop and enjoy the scenery, while enjoying top quality food. RIOC will view favorably menus that are inventive and interesting, and that incorporate diverse and/or healthy food choices. Menu items may include, but are not limited to, gourmet food products, barbeque, premium coffees and teas, muffins, rolls, bagels, premium cookies, international and ethnic foods, soups, fruit, spring water, juices and gelato. Proposers should submit a menu with their proposals and should include some low-cost food items on their menus. Proposals should include a price list for each item to be sold.

Any and all items sold and prices are subject to RIOC’s prior written approval. The selling and/or advertisement of cigarettes, cigars, any other tobacco products, or alcohol is strictly prohibited. The successful proposer will be required to adhere to and enforce this policy....

... A mandatory pre-bid site visit will be held on April 17, 2012 at 1:00 PM. A brief meeting for will take place at 591 Main Street at the appointed time, a walkthrough of the site will follow....
Click here for the entire RIOC RFP for the Operation of a Waterfront Food Concession on the West Promenade of Roosevelt Island. Below is a location map for the Subway Pier Area from Appendix A of the RFP

Here's a view from above the Subway Pier.

Wouldn't that be great!

Free SAT Preparation Classes Offered By Roosevelt Island Youth Program Starting April 19 - Thursday and Saturday Classes Thru End Of May - Additional Online SAT Prep Available At Khan Academy

Are you a student getting ready for the SAT'S or a parent wishing to help your child with this important test? If so, this message from the Roosevelt Island Youth Program may be of interest.
Attention all 11th and 10th grade Families:

The Roosevelt Island Youth Program is pleased to present

Free SAT Preparation Classes to be held on
Thursdays at 4:30 to 6 pm and
Saturdays at 11:00 to 2:30 (with a 1/2 hour break at 12:30)
Reading/Writing Prep Classes will be taught by Matthew Katz.
Math Prep Classes will be taught by Lydia Tang.

Classes will start this Thursday, April 19, 2012 and will continue through the end of May 2012, in time for the June SAT. Classes will be held at the Roosevelt Island Youth Center, 2nd Floor.
For additional SAT math help, check out the online Khan Academy SAT Preparation Class.

Watch it on Academic Earth

More on the Khan Academy from previous post.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Big Agenda For RIOC Board Operations Committee Meeting Monday April 16 - Roosevelt Island High Pressure Gas, Open Space Recreation Use, Good Shepherd Roof Replacement, Meditation Steps, Tram, Motorgate, Helix, Steam Plant & More

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Operations Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Monday, April 16, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.


1. Follow-up on Prior Items
� High Pressure Gas Service for Roosevelt Island
� Good Shepherd Roof Replacement Project
� Installation of Bench at Octagon Field Bus Stop
� Project Management Reporting System
� Bus Garage/Warehouse Rehabilitation Project
� Recreational Use of Open Areas Opposite Prow and Riverwalk

2. Status on Ongoing Projects
� Good Shepherd Plaza Replacement Project
� Tram Modernization Project
Contract Extension for Shea Carr Jewel
Station Renovation Project
Manhattan Station ADA Elevator
� Meditation Steps Replacement Project
� Motorgate Garage
Electrical Upgrade
Car Charging Stations
North Elevators
� Island-wide Wireless Network/Infrastructure Project
� Document Scanning Project
� Helix Reconstruction Project

3. New Items
� Disposition of Steam Plant
� Contract with Henrich Equipment Company
� IT Department Professional Services
� Schedule future review of:
IT Department
Public Safety Department
Park and Recreations Department
Community Relations Department
Strategic Plan and Implications on Operations
During the April Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Meeting Public Session, RIOC Director Margie Smith asked if there was any interest in making the Southtown temporary parking lots into usable, green, recreational space at least until Southtown Buildings 7-9 begin construction.

 Image of Southtown Commons and Temporary Dirt Parking Lot

Potential ideas include picnic tables and chairs. exercise equipment, volleyball/badminton nets or any other passive or active recreational use instead of parking. 

Another potential Roosevelt Island open space for active and passive recreational use being explored is the area between the Octagon Soccer Field and boat prow dock pictured below.

 Here's Ms. Smith discussing the idea for additional Roosevelt Island Open Space at the April RIRA meeting.

Now the idea is on the RIOC Operations Committee Agenda for tomorrow. Sounds like a good idea to me and I hope it gets approved.