Saturday, May 5, 2012

Normal Roosevelt Island F Train Subway Service This Weekend - No Disruptions In Either Direction

F Train Arriving At Roosevelt Island Subway Station

A post on May 2 reported MTA announcement of no Manhattan bound subway service this weekend. The post was updated on May 3 stating:
The weekend May 4-7 F Trains Service Disruption for Roosevelt Island is no longer listed on the MTA's web page.
Today, reader Ratso asks:
It may have been corrected on May 3rd in small type.  I mean a notice today in those big red letters that says the train is running.Many people on the Tram this morning thought that the subway was out. 
Consider it corrected and I am sorry if anybody was inconvenienced by the original post.

Sad News, Young Roosevelt Island Woman Dies After Fall From 30 River Road Manhattan Park Building

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC)

This morning PSD responded to a call regarding an apparent suicide in Manhattan Park. The NYPD and FDNY were called and responded. The Medical Examiner was also on scene as well. Our thoughts are with the Family and Roosevelt Island Community.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
Information was confirmed by NYPD Press Spokesperson

Report From RIOC President Leslie Torres - Roosevelt Island Fitness Day Bodies In Motion With Gilad, Public Safety Commendations, Free Mammograms, Bridge Testing Advisory & Happy Birthday

You Tube Video of Bodies In Motion With Gilad

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Lesie Torres sends the following report to Roosevelt Island residents.
I want to kick off this week’s column by wishing a happy birthday to Carl Bradford, who has been a RIOC bus operator since 1979. We thank Carl, who celebrated his birthday last week, for his many years of service and continued hard work.

Public Safety Department’s Annual Commendation Ceremony

Every year in May, RIOC’s Public Safety Department hosts an Annual Commendation Ceremony to honor the courageous work of its uniformed officers, and to thank the community for its assistance in making Roosevelt Island a safe place to live. We encourage all of you to join us for this year’s ceremony on May 18 at 4:00 pm at the 591 Main Street Plaza.

Officers will be recognized for the exemplary jobs they have done on specific service calls in the past year. Among those receiving commendations will be Officers Julio Jiminez and Jonathan Martinez for helping to save the life of a man who had jumped into the East River in February. The Public Safety Department will also recognize RIOC groundskeepers Jamal Perry and Nelson Soltren who assisted in the rescue. Additionally, Officers Christian Gilmore and Michael Cabassa will both be officially promoted to the rank of Detective, and a Roosevelt Island resident will receive a special award for assistance given to the department in the last year.

As a part of National Police Week, the ceremony is our way of thanking our own law enforcement officers for the important work they do to serve and protect our community.

Day of Fitness with Gilad Janklowicz and Josh Taylor

On May 12 “Bodies in Motion” star Gilad Janklowicz and Spinning International Master Instructor Josh Taylor will be on Roosevelt Island for our Parks and Recreation Department’s first-ever Day of Fitness event. It’s free and open to anyone who wants to join the fun.

Janklowicz will lead two 45-minute Bodies in Motion classes on Firefighters Field – the first at 1:00 pm and the second at 2:15 pm. Each class will be followed by a meet-and-greet session. Meanwhile Taylor will lead two spinning classes in Sportspark’s ping pong room at 1:00 and at 3:00. Participants in the Day of Fitness can also sample Sportspark classes on Firefighters Field: Tango at 1:00, Zumba at 2:00, and Roosevelt Island Boot Camp at 3:00.

Each participant will get a water bottle and a t-shirt. For more information, please call (212) 832-4563 or (212) 832-4559.

Senator Serrano to Sponsor Free Mammograms on Roosevelt Island Day

Senator Jose M. Serrano will be sponsoring free mammogram screenings on Roosevelt Island Day – Saturday, June 9 – at the 591 Main Street Plaza from 1:30 pm to 5:00 pm. Part of Project Renewal’s ScanVan Program, the screenings will be available for women 40 years of age and older who have not had a mammogram in the past year. Please call 1-800-564-6868 for an appointment. The event is being co-sponsored by Council Member Lappin and Assembly Member Kellner. We thank all of the sponsors for this generous service.

Department of Transportation Testing the Roosevelt Island Bridge

The New York City Department of Transportation (DOT) Division of Bridges plans to resume testing the newly rehabilitated Roosevelt Island Bridge beginning on Monday, May 7 at 10 am. Testing is expected to be finished on May 18.

As during previous testing periods, the bridge will be closed to all traffic for 15-minute intervals, between 10 am and 2 pm. Public Safety will do its best to keep traffic flowing during DOT’s testing.

Friday, May 4, 2012

RIRA President's Report On Roosevelt Island Bike Share, Meeting With RIOC Directors, Main Street Retail, Library Funding, Annual Blood Drive & More

Below is Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) President Matt Katz report to the May 2 Common Council. Among the topics Mr. Katz addressed were:

  • Community Planning Board 8 Bike Sharing discussion (will have more on this in subsequent post)
  • Requesting RIOC Board Members to meet with residents following RIOC May 24 Board Meeting (some difficulty with RIOC arranging this)
  • Certificate of Appreciation From Roosevelt Island Chamber of Commerce for RIRA's participation in the Holiday Lights Program
  • Senior Center Flea Market
  • Silicon City Coalition
  • Main Street Retail and concern that proposed Library for 504 Main Street may not get fully funded and
  • annual RIRA Blood Drive

You Tube Video Of May RIRA President's Report To Common Council

Jazz Salon At Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA The FIrst Sunday Of Every Month 5-7 PM - Come Dance, Listen To Music, Admire The Art, Hang Out With Old and New Friends

Received the following invitation from Gallery RIVAA:
You are invited to “First Sunday Jazz Salon”, hosted by Gallery RIVAA every first Sunday of the month from 5-7 PM. The ambiance is relaxed, you can listen to the music, dance, admire the artworks, chat, or enjoy the refreshments.

The featured band is “Art & The Impressionists”, led by Susheel Kurien, known not only as a musician, but also as the producer and director of the groundbreaking documentary “Finding Carlton”.
 Here are some scenes from a past Gallery RIVAA Jazz Salon

as well as more information on band leader/Finding Carlton documentary producer Susheel Kurien.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Take A Municipal Arts Society Jane's Walk Around Roosevelt Island This Sunday Or Any Of 70 Additional Free Walks This Weekend - Learn More About Urbanist Jane Jacobs Too

The Municipal Arts Society (MAS) is presenting Jane's Walk NYC this weekend. According to the MAS:
On Saturday, May 5 and Sunday, May 6, join thousands of New Yorkers and “take your eyes to the street” for Jane’s Walk NYC – a weekend series of more than 70 FREE guided walks (and bike rides!) throughout New York’s five boroughs. All Jane’s Walks are free and there is NO registration required. Stroll through a beloved neighborhood or discover one never visited. Cross bridges, hike through parks or take part in a very special walk from one end of Broadway to the other. Started in Toronto in 2007, this international program was created to commemorate the life and legacy of urbanist Jane Jacobs.
Among the more than 70 NYC Jane's Walks is one on Roosevelt Island this Sunday. From the MAS:
Date: May 6
Time: 2:00 PM – 4:00 PM
Walk Host: Judith Berdy, of the Roosevelt Island Historical Society
Accessibility: Partially Accessible - curbs, uneven terrain, busy sidewalks
Description: Follow Judith Birdy, the President of the Roosevelt Island Historical Society on a Jane's Walk that will go north through 1970's new town to discover the history of the island, and learn how it has changed from an island of institutions to a residential community. Learn about future plans for the island, including a new university science campus. This is a great Walk for those wishing for a moderate length walk (this walk will cover approximately 12 blocks).
Meeting Place: Roosevelt Island Historical Society Visitor Center, Tram Plaza, Roosevelt Island
Ending Place: Roosevelt Island Historical Society Visitor Center, Tram Plaza, Roosevelt Island
A list of more MAS Jane's Walk NYC this weekend available here.

More on Jane Jacobs from this 2007 MAS panel discussion

and from this review of her work.

You Tube Video of Jane Jacobs, The Little Woman Who Could

NYPD Community Officer And Manhattan DA Representative Report On Roosevelt Island Public Safety Issues To RIRA Meeting Last Night - For The Most Part, Very Safe and Great Place To Live

Roosevelt Island's NYPD Community Police Officer Dino Sitaris spoke at last night's Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Session. Officer Sitaris emphasized that Roosevelt Island was a very safe place to live and that he would be proud to live here with his family. Officer Sitaris did express concern over two recent incidents involving tires being stolen at the Motorgate Garage.

Here's what Officer Sitaris had to say.

You Tube Video Of Officer Sitaris Speaking at May 2 RIRA Meeting

Manhattan District Attorney's Office Community Affairs Coordinator Linda Jones Janneh also spoke during the RIRA Public Session reporting on the disposition of Roosevelt Island cases prosecuted by her office. Here's what she had to say.

You Tube Video of Manhattan DA Community Affairs Presentation To May RIRA Meeting.

Concerns Continue To Be Raised For Current Goldwater Patients Needing Homes Before Hospital Demolition And Cornell NYC Tech Campus Starts Roosevelt Island Construction

 Image of Goldwater Hospital Patient Armand Xama From DNA Info

Reported previously on concerns for the current patients at Goldwater Hospital who will have to be moved to other locations prior to the demolition of the hospital buildings and start of construction for Cornell NYC Tech campus. From January 4, 2012 post:
... During the Press Conference announcing Cornell/Technion being selected to build the NYC Applied Sciences and Engineering School at the Roosevelt Island Goldwater Hospital campus site, Mayor Bloomberg was asked about what will happen to current patients. Mayor Bloomberg said that the closing of Goldwater Hospital was planned for a long time and had nothing to do with the NYC Applied Sciences and Engineering School being located on Roosevelt Island. Here's what he had to say.

DNA Info reported today:
The tech campus heralded as making New York City even more cutting edge isn't being celebrated by everyone on Roosevelt Island.

For Armand Xama, 30, a paraplegic injured in a diving accident five years ago, it means he needs to start looking for a new home.

Xama has lived at the island's Goldwater Hospital for nearly two years, but the nursing home and long term rehabilitation center is set to close by December 2013 to make way for Cornell's tech campus.

Xama is worried he'll be put in a nursing home.

Over the next 18 months, roughly 800 patients will be have to be relocated from the 9.9-acre complex on the southern end of Roosevelt Island, built in 1939 as the first public hospital devoted to chronic diseases....
... Susan Dooha, executive director of the Center for Independence of the Disabled, acknowledged that many individuals may have special circumstances. Her group will soon be helping Goldwater residents with resources and information, she said.

"Low-income housing is virtually nonexistent," she said, "and people with disabilities, for the most part, don’t qualify for supportive housing,” which is often set aside for people with developmental or psychiatric disabilities.

"To their credit,” she said, “Coler-Goldwater is trying to be creative in finding housing."

She said the closure was “a hugely exciting opportunity” to “help people to return to the community when they really don’t need nursing home-level care or they do, but can be receiving it in the community.”...
Click here for the entire DNA article.

Roosevelt Island's Doctor Jack Resnick, who treats many Goldwater Patients, reported on ways to provide independence and treatment for some patients at home rather than in hospitals in this previous post.

The NY Post reported in December 2011:
... Some 201 patients are supposed to move into beds in the old North General Hospital in Harlem, now being called Goldwater North, which is being renovated. Another 164 are to be relocated to a skilled-nursing facility being built on North General’s parking lot.
But that leaves 516 to be accommodated elsewhere.

The HHC said it will make room at Coler Hospital at the north end of Roosevelt Island, at three other long-term facilities it operates, in community housing, or at new apartments it might build on land at Metropolitan Hospital in East Harlem....
In all the excitement over the coming of Cornell NYC Tech, let's not forget that there are currently people living at Goldwater Hospital on Roosevelt Island whose lives will be tremendously disrupted by the new science and engineering school.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Time Lapse Video Of One World Trade Center Rising From The Ground Above The Empire State Building - Now Tallest Building In New York

No Response For Roosevelt Island Rowing/Kayaking Request For Proposals, One Response For Waterfront Food Concession - RIOC Real Estate Committee Meeting In Executive Session to Discuss RFP's As Well As Island House and Southtown Ground Lease Extensions

Yesterday was the due date for submission of the Roosevelt Island Rowing/Kayaking and West Promenade Subway Pier Waterfront Food Concession Request For Proposals (RFP) to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC). Though not officially confirmed, my understanding is that there were no submissions for the Rowing/Kayaking RFP and only one for the Waterfront Food Concession RFP.

Both of these subjects are among the Agenda Items for today's Executive Session RIOC Real Estate Committee meeting which is closed to the public.

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Real Estate Development Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.


1. Chair's Motion for Executive Session to Review and Discuss:
a. Responses to RFP's:
i. RFP#12-27395 Operation of a Kayaking/Rowing Concession in the Eastern Channel off
Roosevelt Island; and
ii. RFP#12-27396 Operation of a Waterfront Food Concession on the West Promenade of Roosevelt Island;
b. Proposed Modifications to the Ground Lease for Southtown Buildings 7, 8 and 9; and
c. Proposed Modifications to the Ground Lease for Island House. 
As with all RFP submissions, RIOC can choose to accept, reject or modify any proposal.

Last weekend, I visited Gantry State Park in Long Island City and came across their version of a waterfront food concession with seating for about 30, though it was closed at the time,

as well as these places to relax and take in the great East River Waterfront Views.

(note the Kahn/FDR Memorial in background)

 If you have not been to Gantry State Park in Long Island City - go, they did a great job.

No Manhattan Bound F Train Service To Manahattan Late Tonight, No Roosevelt Island Bound F Train Service From Manhattan Late Tomorrow NIght and No Manhattan Bound F Train Service This Weekend

F Train Arriving At Roosevelt Island Subway Station

Plan on Roosevelt Island F train subway service disruptions for the next couple of days through the weekend.

According to the MTA, there will be no Manhattan Bound F Train Service from Roosevelt Island late tonight:
... F Coney Island-bound trains run via M the from Roosevelt Av to 47-50 Sts Late Night, 12:01 AM to 5 AM, Thursday, May 3

Trains run express from Roosevelt Av to Queens Plaza.

No Coney Island-bound F service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St and 57 St....
There will be no F Train Service from Manhattan to Roosevelt Island late night tomorrow:
... F Jamaica-bound trains run via the  from 47-50 Sts to Roosevelt Av Late Night, 12:01 AM to 5 AM, Friday, May 4

Trains run express from Queens Plaza to Roosevelt Av, then resume the  route to 179 St.

No Jamaica-bound F service at 57 St, Lexington Av/63 St, Roosevelt Island and 21 St-Queensbridge...
There will be no Manhattan bound F Train Service from Roosevelt Island this weekend either. According to the MTA:
... F Coney Island-bound trains run via the  from Roosevelt Av to 47-50 Sts Weekend, 11 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, May 4 - 7

Trains run express from Roosevelt Av to Queens Plaza.

No Coney Island-bound  F service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St and 57 St....
Plan accordingly.

UPDATE 5/3 3:10 PM - The weekend May 4-7 F Trains Service Disruption for Roosevelt Island is no longer listed on the MTA's web page.

Roosevelt Island Community NYPD Officer Sitaris Speaking At Tonight's RIRA Meeting, Come Learn What Is Going On - State Senator Jose Serrano's Roosevelt Island Constituent Office Hours Today Too

Image of June 2011 RIRA Common Council Meeting

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) will be meeting later today, 8 PM at the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street).

As always, prior to the start of each meeting there is a public session in which residents can come and address the Common Council Delegates on any issue of concern. Among tonight's Public Session speakers is Roosevelt Island's NYPD community officer Dino Sitaris.

Below is the Agenda for tonight's meeting.
Date: Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Time: 8:00 P.M. - Finish

Place: Chapel of the Good Shepherd, 543 Main Street

(If convenient, would you please arrive 10 minutes in advance to help set up chairs, or stay 10 minutes late to help clean up? We are guests in the building and need to be good neighbors. Thanks in advance!)

1. Public Session (8:00)

NYPD Officer Dino Sitaras

2. Roll Call (8:15)

X 3. Approval of Agenda (8:20)

X 4. Approval of Minutes– April 4,, 2012 (8:25)

5. Treasurer’s Report (8:30)

6. President's Report (8:35)

7. Committees (8:50)

Social, Cultural and Educational Services

X Motion to fund RI Day breakfast


Government Relations/MTG sub-committee



Island Services/Main St. Retail

Planning/Silicon Island

Public Safety

8. Old Business (9:50)

Katz – Sign-up for blood drive volunteers

9. New Business (9:55)

10. Adjourn

X Agenda items requiring action

Next Meeting:June 6, 2012
Here is Officer Sitaris speaking at the November 2011 RIRA meeting.

You Tube Video of NYPD Officer Addressing RIRA November Meeting

Also today, Roosevelt Island State Senator Jose Serrano's staff will be holding their monthly constituent office hours today.
Roosevelt Island Office Hours

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

4:00 pm to 7:00 pm

RIOC Offices

591 Main Street

New York, NY 10044
If you have any questions to ask Senator Serrano's staff or are in need of any assistance that may require the help of your elected representative stop on by RIOC HQ. Also, bring photocopies of any paperwork related to your situation so that the Serrano staff can effectively and efficiently address the issue.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Would You Like Bike Sharing On Roosevelt Island? If So, Let Community Planning Board 8 Know Tomorrow During Public Hearing

Image of Potential Roosevelt Island Bike Sharing Station from Hunter College Access RI(Page 39)

A reminder from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):

The Roosevelt Island Community is encouraged to attend a public hearing hosted by Community Board 8 that will discuss Roosevelt Island as a demo site for bike sharing as part of the city-wide Department of Transportation (DOT) Bike Sharing Program.
When: Wednesday, May 2nd at 6:30 PM
Where: Lenox Hill Hospital, located at 131 East 76th Street (Einhorn Auditorium).
After the discussion, you will have the chance to voice your opinion about this matter.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
More on Community Planning Board 8 Roosevelt Island Bike Sharing public hearing from previous post.

Update On Roosevelt Island Mobile Food Truck Service - Still Waiting For RIOC To Make Permits Available, Maybe This Week?

 Image Of Battery Park City Mobile Food Truck Area

During yesterday's Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Operations Committee Meeting (audio web cast of the entire meeting is here), RIOC Director Margie Smith asked when the permits for mobile food trucks operating on Roosevelt Island would be available to interested vendors.

Mobile Food Truck service for the area on the West Promenade just north of the subway station was approved during a March 21 RIOC Operations Committee meeting. Other Mobil Food Trucks and vending locations were approved at a February 16 Real Estate Committee meeting.

RIOC Vice President of Operations Fernando Martinez responded that RIOC hopes to have the applications for the Roosevelt Island Mobile Food Trucks finalized this week and then sent to any interested vendor. Mr. Martinez also stated that two Mobile Food Truck operators have expressed interest in coming to Roosevelt Island.

Here's the brief discussion.

It will be nice to have mobile food truck vendors serving Roosevelt Island in addition to the Mr. Softee who already managed to get a permit.

Scenic Dresser/Prop Builder Needed For Outdoor Roosevelt Island Summer Production Of Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing

Reported previously on:
A new Roosevelt Island theater group, Island Shakespeare, is coming to Roosevelt Island and they plan on performing Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing this summer at the Eastwood Amphitheater located behind 540 Main Street....
Island Shakespeare is currently seeking a person to join their production team. According to Playbill:
Scenic Dresser/Prop Builder

Island Shakespeare
Category: Technical

Island Shakespeare, an experience theatre company located on Roosevelt Island, is seeking an additional member of its production team for it's summer production of Shakespeare's ''Much Ado About Nothing.'' Thomas R. Kee, dir. Rehearsals start May 21st. Performances run June 15- July 1 (Fri-Sun) on Roosevelt Island. For more info on Island Shakespeare, please visit, or at

We are looking for someone with sewing skills and their own space to work who feels comfortable building some of the prop and set pieces we need. Sewing skills are very important as we'll be working a lot with fabrics building flags, tents, etc.

This job will have a limited stipend.

If you are interested, please email us and we will set up a meeting to discuss the position further.
Click here for more information from Playbill.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Roosevelt Island's Island House Building Begins Exit From Mitchell Lama Program Under An Affordability Plan Agreed To By Owner, Residents and NY State Reports Tenants Association

Image of Roosevelt Island's Island House Entrance

It looks like Roosevelt Island's Island House is about to exit the NY State Mitchell Lama program under an affordability plan agreed to by the Owner (David Hirschhorn), Residents and NY State. According to this Island House Tenants Association (IHTA) Newsletter dated April 29:
We could not be more delighted than to send to you the attached letter that was sent by RIOC on Friday to the heads of the relevant State agencies and the leadership of the New York State Legislature.

Quite simply, it represents the agreement, after so many years, of all the State agencies, as well as Governor Cuomo, to the affordability plan and the protection it represents for the 400 families of Island House, that we voted on in September 2009. With the issuance of this letter (commencing the required 90 day notice of action under the Public Authorities Act), RIOC will now proceed with a vote to extend the ground lease for Island House allowing our building to exit Mitchell Lama (as the owner has the right to do) and to enter into the terms of the Affordability Plan. As the letter makes clear, if, for some reason, the New York Attorney General, when he reviews the Offering Plan, were to deny the conversion portion allowing tenants to purchase their units as outlined in the plan, then every tenant would be covered by the affordable rent program in the Affordability Plan for the next 30 years.

We understand that there will be many questions regarding what all this means and next steps. We are working to set up a tenant meeting as soon as possible with the key principals involved so as to provide the ability for as comprehensive a discussion as possible. We will send out a notice of that meeting shortly, but we didn't want to delay getting this letter to you.

The IHTA Board
The contents of the referenced letter dated April 27 sent by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) is below:
Re: 90-Day Notice Letter under the Public Authorities Law Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation Property: 551-575 Main Street - Ground Lease Modification and Extension Tenant : North Town Phase II Houses, Inc.

To Whom It May Concern:

Pursuant to subparagraph (ii) of paragraph (d) of subdivision (6) of § 2897 of Title 5-A of the Public Authorities Law, this explanatory statement is being provided at least 90 days prior to the disposal of property by negotiation.


As authorized by Title 5-A, § 2897 (6)(c)(v) and § 2897 (7)(a)(ii) of the Public Authorities Law, The Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (“RIOC”) consistent with its purpose, mission and governing statute intends to dispose of property by negotiation not less than 90 days from the date of this notice.

The disposition at issue concerns a proposed modification and extension of an existing ground lease (the “Ground Lease”) between the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (“RIOC”) and North Town Phase II Houses, Inc. (the “Housing Company”), governing a Mitchell-Lama building with 400 residential rental units located on Roosevelt Island (“Island House”). The equitable owner of the Housing Company’s interest in the Ground Lease (North Town Phase II Associates, LP, referred to herein as the “Partnership”), has agreed to create and implement a program to maintain Island House as an affordable housing complex through conversion of the building into condominium and cooperative units (the “Conversion”), pursuant to a thirty-year affordability plan (the “Affordability Plan”) approved by New York State Homes and Community Renewal. In exchange for the affordability-based Conversion, RIOC intends to grant the Partnership an extension of the expiration date of the existing Ground Lease from January 31, 2028 through December 22, 2068.

In addition, the proposed modification and extension of the existing Ground Lease provides for below-market ground rent payable to RIOC -- approximately 48% less than a full market ground rent unencumbered by the “Affordability Plan” for a lease extension through to 2068. The below-market ground rent was negotiated in exchange for the Partnership not exiting the Mitchell- Lama program at market. As a result of this agreement, Island House will maintain affordable housing -- at least 65% of the 400 units -- for an additional 30 years. RIOC supports affordable housing as part of its mission and statutory purpose.

In the event the Conversion is not approved by the New York State Attorney General’s Office, the building will convert as an “Affordable Rental,” whereby 65% of the 400 units will be subject to rent increases using as a base those percentage increases given to rent stabilized apartments for 30 years. Under this scenario, the below-market ground rent will be approximately 58% less than full market ground rent.

RIOC will not publicly advertise for bids before granting the lease extension and modification. Since the purposes of this property disposition are within RIOC’s purpose, mission and statutory authority, RIOC is availing itself of the exceptions within the Public Authorities Law previously cited herein.
Here's the full letter:

More on Island House privatization from previous posts.

Among the items on the Agenda for RIOC Real Estate Committee meeting on May 2 is the Island House Ground Lease Modification (Item c)
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Real Estate Development Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Wednesday, May 2, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.
1. Chair’s Motion for Executive Session to Review and Discuss:

a. Responses to RFP's:

i. RFP#12-27395 Operation of a Kayaking/Rowing Concession in the Eastern Channel off Roosevelt Island; and

ii. RFP#12-27396 Operation of a Waterfront Food Concession on the West Promenade of Roosevelt Island;

b. Proposed Modifications to the Ground Lease for Southtown Buildings 7, 8 and 9; and
c. Proposed Modifications to the Ground Lease for Island House.
The April 16, 2012 Wall Street Journal had an interesting article on Bronx Mitchell Lama Co Op City's efforts to privatize out of the Mitchell Lama program:
Co-op City, the nation's largest cooperative housing complex, is in discussions with federal, state and city housing officials to secure a new $600 million, low-interest mortgage that would likely keep Co-op City as part of a middle-income housing program for years to come.

Built in the late 1960s and early 1970s, the sprawling 15,000-unit Co-op City complex in the northeast Bronx has been known as a middle-class stronghold. Moderate- and middle-income families can buy units at discounts to market rates through a state program known as Mitchell-Lama....
Click here for the entire Wall Street Journal article.

Unlike Co-Op City, Roosevelt Island's Island House is a rental Mitchell Lama building though Roosevelt Island's Rivercross is a co-op which is exploring exiting Mitchell Lama through privatization.

UPDATE 5/8 - More details on Island House privatization and affordability plan.

Island Kids Forming Roosevelt Island Digital Photography Workshop - Classes Start On May 5 - Stop By Trellis Diner Tonight For More Information

Received the following announcement from Island Kids:
Island Kids will be running it's first Digital Photography Workshop for Teens ages 13-17.

The goal of the course will be developing the student's artistic vision through personal expression. Techniques will be discussed to enhance the student's ability to express themselves photographically.

The workshop will run Saturdays from 12-3pm starting May 5th.

There will be 8 classes with shooting field trips and practical demos. Students will shoot weekly, display their work and discuss it among the group. The course will culminate in a group show for friends and family.

The fee for the workshop is $425.00 (includes $25.00 lab fee)

The course is limited to 12 participants on a first come basis.

Participants must supply their own cameras (any digital camera or smart phone is acceptable) and memory cards.

To register or ask questions, please contact Olya at;
Phone - 646-812-3121
Email -
If you would like more information, stop by Trellis Diner tonight between 6:30 PM - 9 and speak with the Digital Photography Workshop organizers Olya and Brian.

Roosevelt Island Operations Committee Meeting Today, Parks, Seawall, Water Tunnel, Southtown Exercise and Picnic Space Among Items On Agenda - When Will Food Trucks Permits Be Ready From RIOC?

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 30, 2012 at 5:30 p.m. at the RIOC administrative office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island,
New York.


1. Review of Parks and Recreations Department;
2. Discussion of Southpoint Park East and West Seawalls;
3. Update on Roosevelt Island DEP Water Tunnel Project;
4. Discussion of Zip Car at Southtown Area;
5. Update on Con Edison/Cornell Project;
6. Discussion of Main Street Roadway Reconstruction Project; and
7. Discussion of Incident/Community Notification System.
Item 4 regarding the Zip Car at Southtown Area may have to do with the proposal by RIOC Director Margie Smith to install temporary exercise equipment,

picnic tables and/or a sand beach pit in the Southtown Lot across from Fuji East where Zip Cars are currently parked.

and near the Boat Prow dock by the Octagon as well.

The Zip Cars currently parked in the Southtown Lot would then park on the street in Southtown. Here's discussion of the subject during April 16 RIOC Operations Committee Meeting.

Following up on other Operations Committee matters, no progress seems to be happening with the decision made at the March 21 RIOC Operations Committee meeting allowing mobile food trucks to serve the Roosevelt Island Community from the West Channel Road just north of the subway. I have made repeated efforts to ask RIOC when the permits for Food Trucks in the area would be ready.
I am following up on inquiries below regarding status of Mobile Food Truck vendor permits for West Channel Road and other locations on Roosevelt Island. I believe it has been at least a month since the permits for these locations were approved by the RIOC Board.

Are the permits available now and if not, when do you anticipate they will be ready?

Thank you.
To date, have not received a response from RIOC regarding when the mobile food truck permits would be available.

Here's the Battery Park City Mobile Food Truck area on a recent Friday afternoon.

Wonder what is taking RIOC so long to put the mobile food truck permitting process in place?