Saturday, June 14, 2014

Taxi Catches Fire On Queensboro Bridge Tonight Seen From Roosevelt Island Tram

According to the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse:

NBC New York reports

A taxi caught on fire while on the 59th Street early Saturday evening, as shown on this video taken on the Roosevelt Island tram. There were no injuries reported in connection with the fire, according to the FDNY.
There have been several other vehicle fires on the Queensboro bridge since April 2013.

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island New Music At Gallery RIVAA Tonight - With A Shakuhachi, Synthesizer & Qin (Chinese Zither)

Looking for something to do tonight? Consider a night of music at Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA.

According to Gallery RIVAA:
You are cordially invited to the musical event - New Music on Saturday June 14th at 7PM at Gallery RIVAA.

Saturday, June 14, 2014 at 7 PM

New Music @ The Roosevelt Island Visual Arts Association featuring:

Gerald Starlight on shakuhachi

Andrew Newcomb on synthesizer

Guest artist Mingmei Yip on qin (Chinese zither).

Admission is free, donations to the gallery are welcome.

Friday, June 13, 2014

No Roosevelt Island F Trains From Manhattan This Weekend Says MTA

According to the MTA Weekender:
F Jamaica-bound trains run via the M from 47-50 Sts to Roosevelt Av

Weekend, 9:45 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Jun 13 - 16

No Jamaica-bound service at 57 St, Lexington Av/63 St, Roosevelt Island and 21 St-Queensbridge.
The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) adds:
The MTA has advised that from 9:45 PM Friday, June 13th to 5:00 AM Monday, June 16th, there will be no Queens-Bound F train service at the Roosevelt Island station. For service to Queens from Roosevelt Island, take the Q102 to Queens Plaza, E, M, R station where F train service is available, or, take the Manhattan- bound F train to 47-50th Sts. and transfer to a Queens bound F train. Please plan your travel accordingly and visit or call 511 for more information.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group

Large Crane Transported By East River Barge For Construction Of Hudson Related Southtown 266 Unit Market Rate Rental Riverwalk Building 7 - Crane Too Heavy For Roosevelt Island Bridge Helix

A large barge pulled up aside Roosevelt Island's Southtown Riverwalk Buildiing 7 construction site this morning.

Image From RI On Crackberry

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
On Friday, June 13 from 7 AM until 12 PM, a large crane will be transported by barge to the Riverwalk Building 7 construction site. During this time, a section of the East Promenade to the west of the site will be closed to the public. Flag persons will be posted onsite to direct pedestrian traffic.
The crane

was lifted from the barge

and deposited inside the construction site.

As Hudson Related's Sara Willard explains:
The crane is for our superstructure/concrete contractors to complete the remaining floors at the building.  We are currently on floor 14.  We project to "top out" the floors in late July, by which the barge will be back to pick-up the crane.

After delivery of the crane, the barge headed back south on the East River passing underneath

the Queensboro Bridge.

The Crane was barged because it was too heavy to be transported over the Roosevelt Island Bridge.

On March 3, 2014 the Riverwalk Building 7 construction site was only a hole in the ground.

Image Of Roosevelt Island Riverwalk Building 7 Construction Site March 3

More on Roosevelt Island's Riverwalk 266 unit market rate rental Building 7 from previous post.

13th Annual Roosevelt Island Blood Drive Under Way, Sign Up To Be A Donor At The Farmers Market Or Online And Help Save A Life

The annual Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Blood Drive is under way. During the last two Saturdays, RIRA Common Council Members

have been at their Farmers Market Table recruiting donors to give blood on Roosevelt Island Day - June 21.

RIRA reps will be at their Farmers Market Table again tomorrow seeking blood donors. RIRA President Jeff Escobar asks you to consider signing up to donate blood. According to Mr. Escobar:
... Another way to participate in renewing the fabric of our community is to be a donor in the 13th annual RIRA Blood Drive, which benefits the New York Blood Center. RIRA volunteers will be manning a donor sign-up table at the Farmer’s Market for four consecutive Saturdays beginning May 31, to sign up any and all who wish to participate. The Blood Drive will culminate with the actual donations on June 21, during the annual Roosevelt Island Day festivities. If you are able, please sign up to donate. You could save a life. And, as an incentive to those who may need a little persuasion to give, Scott Bobo of our own Main Street Sweets Shop has very kindly offered, with the presentation of your donor pledge card, a “two-scoops for the price of one” offer....
RIRA's Russell Fields reports that 43 Roosevelt Island Blood Donors have already signed up. You can sign up tomorrow (Saturday, June 14) at the Farmers Market or online here.

Here's more on the NY Blood Center and why it is important to donate.

If you can, please sign up to donate blood at the RIRA Farmers Market table on Saturday or online.

UPDATE 6:PM - More information on Roosevelt Island Day Schedule from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Catholic/Christian Professionals Summer Social At Riverwalk Bar & Grill Friday June 13 - Drink, Eat And Meet Other Like Minded Professionals

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports:

More info on the event here.

GREAT NEWS, Roosevelt Island East River Eleanor's Pier To Open June 29 - Hudson Related Seeking NYC Food Vendors And Retailers, I'm Hoping For The General Tso's Chicken Po Boy Sandwich Vendor

GREAT NEWS - The Roosevelt Island West Pier food concession

operated by Southtown Developer/Main Street Master Leaseholder Hudson Related with Auster Agency will open for business Sunday June 29 under the name Eleanor's Pier.

According to Hudson Related:
Eleanor’s Pier at Roosevelt Island

Location: Roosevelt Island Pier (previously known as the Western Promenade) Dates: Fri-Sundays, June 29th thru September 21st
Hours: 12-9PM
  • Soft opening with Roosevelt Island food retailers on Sunday, June 29, 12- 9PM
  • Launching Friday, July 4th 2014
  • Open to the public three days a week: Friday - Sunday, through Sunday, September 21
  • Featuring food vendors and Roosevelt Island's own retailers
  • The perfect hotspot for New Yorkers to bask in the summer sunshine and savor local city bites, while taking in the views of Manhattan's east side
Call to action:
Hudson Companies Inc. and Related Companies LP invite all food vendors and retailers interested in participating in the activation of Eleanor’s Pier to contact us for more information. Please email Deirdre Purdy
at or call at 718.243.1414.
Do you have any food vendor and retailer suggestions to give Hudson Related for Eleanor's Pier? This is my suggestion that I sent to Mr. Kramer:
Please, Please, Please try to get this LIC Flea Vendor who sells General Tso's Chicken Po Boys to the Eleanor Pier this summer.

Here's article from Gothamist about it.
Image of General Tso's Chicken Po Boy Sandwich From Gothamist

That looks delicious.

Here's what the view will look like from Eleanor's Pier on the Roosevelt Island East River waterfront.

Fantastic!!! Very much looking forward to this.

Eleanor's Pier is named for former First Lady and Human Rights activist Eleanor Roosevelt.

Damaged Roosevelt Island Southtown Maple Tree Cut Down Today Says RIOC

Westviewer reported last Monday:

I've been out of town for a week and came back to see a massive tree limb torn away from one of the maple trees on the Southtown lawn near the subway station. Does anyone know what happened?...
The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) advised yesterday that the damaged Roosevelt Island Southtown Maple Tree

is being cut down today.

According to RIOC, on:
Thursday June 12, contractors will remove a damaged tree located to the west of 465 Main Street. Main Street and the adjacent sidewalk will be closed to pedestrians and traffic between 475 Main Street and 455 Main Street from 8 AM and 2 PM. Signs and workers will be posted to redirect direct foot and vehicle traffic.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
Here's what the damaged tree looked like

Image From Rebecca Knell

last Monday.

I asked RIOC if they knew what caused the damage to the tree. Have not heard back yet but will update if any new information.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

New Harassment Allegations Against Roosevelt Island/Upper East Side Assembly Member Micah Kellner - Charges Denied By Kellner, Says Ethics Committee Star Chamber Against Him And Assembly Speaker Silver Punishing Constituents By Withholding Legitimate Community Grants

Reported previously on the sexual harassment charges leveled against Roosevelt Island and Upper East Side Assembly Member Micah Kellner by former staff members. 

The NY Daily News Celeste Katz Daily Politics blog reports today:
Manhattan Assemblyman Micah Kellner - already in hot water for sexual harassment - was punished again Wednesday for making unwanted advances toward staff members.

Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver admonished and severely reprimanded Kellner after an Assembly ethics committee accused him of “unwanted and inappropriate conduct of a sexual nature” toward two female members of his staff....
Click here for the full NY Daily News Daily Politics blog post.

According to NY State Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver:
The Assembly Ethics and Guidance Committee has issued a letter recommending further sanctions against Assemblymember Micah Kellner after investigating allegations that he violated the terms of my December 30, 2013 Letter of Admonition. Specifically, the Committee found that Assemblymember Kellner violated my order not to have interns in his office, attempted to obstruct a climate survey mandated by the Letter of Admonition and engaged in additional sexual harassment beyond the matters that were the subject of the 2013 investigation.

Because of these most recent findings, I am implementing the recommendations of the Committee in full. I have directed Assemblymember Kellner's Albany and district offices be closed and his staff allocation reduced to zero by the end of June.

Also, consistent with the unanimous recommendation of the Committee on Ethics and Guidance, I hereby admonish and severely reprimand Assemblymember Kellner on behalf of the New York State Assembly and its members and declare that his conduct with respect to these matters violates the Assembly's policies on sexual harassment and is inconsistent with the standards of conduct to which Members of the Assembly should be held.
Assembly Member Kellner responds to the charges:
Speaker Silver's decision to close my offices is a classic example of the politics of personal destruction. Because I have exercised my right to appeal the sanctions he has imposed, an appeal in which the arbiter appointed by the Speaker has determined that I am entitled to due process and to see the evidence presented against me - a ruling that the Assembly has so far defied - new charges have now been trumped up against me.

It is no coincidence that these new and unsubstantiated accusations only came to light after Speaker Silver and the Ethics Committee were handed an overwhelming defeat by his own hand-picked hearing officer, Howard Levine, in the initial decision of May 12th on my appeal.

The Ethic Committee is grasping at these new allegations and its secret star chamber report as weapons to prejudice the appeals officer against me while simultaneously trying to get me to drop the appeal. The Assembly Ethics Committee's outside counsel both violated the Committee's requirement of confidentiality by revealing these new allegations to the hearing officer,who is not a party to them, as well as requesting I drop the appeal when he spoke to my attorney regarding these new allegations.

Shelly Silver created the game, he picked the players and set the rules, and now he is furious and embarrassed that he is losing - plain and simple.

What is most deplorable is that the Speaker continues to punish the residents of the Upper East Side, Yorkville, and Roosevelt Island, first by withholding community grants for legitimate vetted organizations, and now by denying them the resources of my office, which assists New Yorkers from all walks of life every day.

I will appeal this decision immediately.
Mr. Kellner is not seeking re-election to the NY State Assembly.

UPDATE 9:30 PM - The NY Daily News reported on April 7:
Nearly 20 Manhattan community groups have been caught in the crossfire of an ugly battle between Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and embattled Assemblyman Micah Kellner.

Silver recently put on hold $185,000 in funding for the groups that Kellner (D-Manhattan) has secured for his district since 2009....
... The legislative member items totaling thousands of dollars each that Silver froze were earmarked for a range of groups, including parent teacher associations, local parks, the Roosevelt Island Disabled Association and Orphans International America.

“I certainly hope that this is simply a bureaucratic mixup,” Kellner said. “I can’t believe the speaker would be so petty as to punish children, seniors and New Yorkers with disabilities.”...
Click here for the entire NY Daily News article.

UPDATE 6/18 - Former Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) President Matthew Katz adds:
I am appalled at the vindictiveness of Speaker Silver and, having known and worked with Assembly Member Kellner since he entered State politics, reject the charges mounted against him. Further, I have to wonder why Silver is withholding grants to organizations within the 76th AD, especially Roosevelt Island. Why are we being tarred with the same brush used against Micah?

Roosevelt Island Cornell NYC Tech Campus Construction Update - Interior Demolition/Abatement Of Goldwater Hospital Continues, New Barging Operator Removing Waste/Delivering Empty Containers, Weather Conditions/Wind Patterns To Be Analyzed And Air Quality Monitoring Results

Here's the most recent Cornell NYC Tech Construction Update describing the demolition of Goldwater Hospital.

Image Of Roosevelt Island's Goldwater Hospital Building C Demolition Area

According to Cornell NYC Tech Construction Update:
June 6 - June 20 Look Ahead

Interior demolition and interior abatement are progressing well across the site. Interior demolition is complete in all but two buildings (Building B and E). The interior abatement crews are currently spread across four buildings. They have completed the abatement work on the Building C roof. The regulatory agencies that are involved in the project have requested that the contractor perform some additional work at this time in advance of structural demolition. As a result, small crews have remobilized and returned to Phase 1 (Building D and F).

The weather station has been removed from the roof of Building J. Consultants will soon begin to analyze the data to develop a comprehensive understanding of weather conditions and wind patterns at the site.

The transition to the new barging operator has been seamless. They have successfully made multiple trips to Roosevelt Island to remove waste and deliver empty containers. The next barge trip will likely take place late in the week of June 9th.
I asked Cornell NYC Tech Assistant Director of Government and Community Relations Jane Swanson:
Can you provide more specific reasons for the additional abatement work required by regulatory agencies that is referenced in Cornell Construction update....
Ms. Swanson replied:
There is a layer of asbestos-containing mastic on the inside face of the exterior masonry walls. We removed it safely in Building C, but left it intact in Buildings D and F, as we were considering an abatement methodology that included removing it as part of the exterior wall structural demolition. At this time, however, we have proposed an abatement methodology that requires removal of the mastic prior to structural demolition, so we intend to re-enter Buildings D and F to complete the removal of this interior mastic.
Also, the most recent air quality monitoring data from Cornell NYC Tech at the Goldwater Hospital site.

Air Quality Action Levels
Background corrected particulate concentration data from the site is compared to particulate action levels. This correction is calculated by subtracting the upwind concentration from the downwind concentration and provides the concentration of particulates being generated by site activities. The specific action levels and their response are as follows

Inclement Weather
Monitoring is not conducted during rain events as precipitation acts as a natural suppressant and prevents the migration of particulates. In addition, moisture can impact the accuracy of the data from the monitors.
More on the Cornell NYC Tech demolition and abatement process, including video describing plan in great detail, from this previous post.

Upcoming Events At The Roosevelt Island New York Public Library - Father's Day Crafts, Family Film Chicken Little, Summer Reading Program & More

Image Of Roosevelt Island NY Public Library

You're invited to these upcoming Roosevelt Island Public Library events:
Thursday, June 12, 3-4pm, Father's Day Craft

Saturday, June 14, 1:30-3pm - Family Film: "Chicken Little"

Tuesday, June 17, 3pm - Summer Reading Kick-Off Program

Wednesday, June 18, 3pm - Loom in the Noon

Thursday, June 19, 11am - Toddler Coloring Time

Saturday, June 21, 2-3 pm - Lesson Labs at Make Music New York: 5-Minute Guitar Lessons by Gary Heimbauer for All Ages

Thursday, June 26, 11-11:45am - Movies for Toddlers
More Roosevelt Island NY Public Library events listed here.

It was announced last July that the Roosevelt Island NY Public Library will be moving to the first floor of 504 Main Street,

Image of New Site of Roosevelt Island Public Library at 504 Main Street

more than doubling its current space, in 2017.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Former RIRA President Polivy Renews Call To Expel Farance From Common Council - Farance Answers RIRA Critics, Accuses Main Street Wire Newspaper Of Biased, Shoddy Reporting And Criticizes RIOC President Indelicato For Procurement Criteria

As previously reported, the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) May 2014 Common Council approved a resolution requesting $10 Thousand:

... in order to continue its work for the Island....
from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC).

The motion was approved by a vote of 18 in favor 1 against and 2 abstentions. RIRA Common Counsel Member Frank Farance was the lone vote against.

 Image of Frank Farance from March 3 CB 8 MTA Transportation Meeting

The RIOC Operations Advisory Committee met on May 12 and after a presentation by RIRA Vice President Sherrie Helsien, as well as former RIRA President Matt Katz (video of presentation here), approved RIRA's request for $10 thousand. The RIRA $10 Thousand funding allocation was then placed on the May 15 RIOC Board Of Directors Meeting Agenda.

Prior to the RIOC Board meeting, Mr. Farance sent an email to RIOC President Charlene Indelicato and others, including NY State Government officials, describing his objections to the RIRA $10 Thousand allocation. During the RIOC Board meeting, it was announced that the RIRA $10 Thousand allocation item was removed from the Agenda and not voted upon. RIOC did not confirm that the reason the RIRA allocation was taken off  the Agenda was the letter from Mr. Farance.

The May 24 editorial of the Main Street Wire newspaper criticized Mr. Farance for sending the letter to RIOC and NY State Government officials expressing his view opposing the $10 Thousand RIOC allocation to RIRA. According to the Main Street Wire editorial with the headline "More Politics of Destruction":
Frank Farance is at it again – or still.

With his viewpoint rejected by an 18-1 vote at the May meeting of the Residents Association’s Common Council, but in his certainty that he was right and everyone else was wrong, he set out to destroy the good works of others – and apparently succeeded.

But Farance was wrong. Wrong to play the sore loser after the vote, wrong to attack his fellow Common Council members, wrong to broadcast his attack and accusations to State officials, and wrong in his basic assumptions....
... From the vantage point of a longtime observer of Farance, RIOC, and the RIRA Common Council, it now appears that Farance is expecting to leave the Island, and is quite willing to burn bridges and people on his way out the door....
Click here for the full Main Street Wire editorial.

Mr. Farance was also criticized at the June RIRA meeting by former RIRA President Ellen Polivy.  Ms. Polivy, who resigned as RIRA President after failing to expel Mr. Farance from RIRA last February, appeared at the June RIRA Meeting Public Session. Ms. Polivy accused Mr. Farance of continuing to sabotage RIRA and encouraged RIRA members to renew efforts to expel Mr. Farance from RIRA. Ms. Polivy referred to Mr. Farance as the:
Crazy Uncle 
Village idiot.
Here''s Ms. Polivy's full remarks during the June RIRA Public Session.

There was no reaction from the RIRA Common Council following Ms. Polivy's Public Session remarks.

Mr. Farance responds to some of his critics:
Sadly, the WIRE's reporting, editorials, journalistic standards, and ethics reach new lows. "The reports of my death are greatly exaggerated", i.e., Roosevelt Island is home for me and I have no plans on leaving. It seems Dick Lutz, lacking valid arguments, short on facts, and without basis, is left with the fabrication that I'm leaving the Island. One might have expected Lutz to do some fact-checking, but that didn't happen.

The WIRE has other problems, too. Did Lutz or Briana Warsing disclose that Sherie Helstien and Matt Katz (who also spoke at the RIOC meeting) are managers at the WIRE? Certainly any credible newspaper would disclose that kind of relationship among its supervisory staff and what is being reported. My sense is that Lutz waves off these complaints with "They're All Volunteers", as he's explained his Letters policy recently. The disclosure is important because we, as readers, can have a better understanding of the perspective (a potentially biased one) in the news being reported -- whether they are volunteers or not is irrelevant to journalistic integrity. Additionally, Ms. Warsing did not disclose that her husband was one of the Common Council members who voted for the faulty RIRA proposal. Again, it is important to disclose this kind of information because readers might be concerned about journalistic conflicts of interest and bias in the WIRE's reporting: favorable and consistent with her husband's position.

While the WIRE reported that I was concerned about a fraudulent RIRA proposal, the WIRE never reported the nature of the fraud -- I'm guessing that many of the WIRE's readers would have arrived at the same concerns, too. Why didn't the WIRE, at least, report what the actual concerns of the proposal? The WIRE's staff never contacted me about my position, and it seems that the WIRE was not interested in the nature of the complaints of fraud. The WIRE seemed more concerned about supporting its tired editorial narrative about Farance, Reid, and Chirivas ... and whitewashing any unpleasant news about Friends/Staff of the WIRE.

However the NYS Attorney General had enough interest in these concerns and has started an investigation with the NYS Inspector General. I look forward to their findings.

Unfortunately, the retaliation has started again in RIRA. RIRA has a new ethics committee, Chaired by Mickey Rindler. Rindler seems more interested in having anonymous RIRA Common Council members slip in last-minute provisions in the RIRA Code Of Ethnics (which will be used to expel people from RIRA at an even quicker pace), and Rindler improperly collected votes outside of the meeting's discussion. What were those last minute provisions? In essence, those anonymous RIRA Common Council members wanted to make sure that anyone reporting RIRA misconduct outside of RIRA can be expelled. Maybe Rindler should focus more upon fixing the ethics problems within RIRA rather than looking for more reasons to expel people who report ethics concerns.

For RIOC President Indelicato, a former Westchester politician, feigns ignorance of State procurement procedures: "It was my fault, the procurement process was not right". Well when you have a 501c4 lobbying organization (RIRA) that is involved in legislation that affects your NYS Public Authority, can Indelicato tell us what the right process is for that lobbying organization to merely say "Services Rendered For Doing Good Stuff In The Past" and get money from the government? It's not just Westchester, or New York State -- I can't think of any place in the US were we'd allow this whimsical Services Rendered as a basis for legitimate government procurement. RIRA Vice President Sherie Helstien is still touting the advantages of this RIOC money: We Can Co-Mingle It With RIRA Funds. Organizations doing legitimate work don't talk this way.

Also, Indelicato is inconsistent with her procurement criteria. She can explain all the procurement hurdles for RIRA's efforts to get Air Quality monitoring for the Island, but for others (the RI Royalty) saying the magic words "Services Rendered" gets money flowing from RIOC. Certainly RIRA's proposal (as presented by another organization) would have never passed muster in its Public Purpose Grant allocations process. I seems that Indelicato, as an executive, favors the Dinosaur Brains approach towards decision-making: it's more important, in a primal way, to sniff out who is Friend and Foe and give money to your Friends, and put up roadblocks for your Foe's legitimate proposals.

Lastly, I'd like to correct the WIRE's perception that I have more power than the Governor. Nope, I don't. But Truth has more power than politicians, and that was one of the founding principles of our country.
Mr. Farance later clarified his comments regarding Mr. Rindler:
Since my letter was circulated within the Common Council, Mickey Rindler has changed his position on accepting "late" votes (he withdrew the late vote). It is exactly this kind of behavior (Mr. Rindler's) that is curbed by transparency, which Mr. Rindler opposes. Still Mr. Rindler persisted in the next Ethnics Committee meeting: he still wanted the provision (making RIRA Common Council members' actions public as a kind of "misconduct") put into the Code Of Ethics, so it would be declared misconduct for expulsion proceedings.

In essence, these rules are used to punish Common Council members who have opinions the majority does not like. If a resident (who is a RIRA member) were to do the same behavior (e.g., report to their neighbors what was heard at a Common Council meeting or RIRA committee meeting), they would not be punished. RIRA's enforcement has been selective and only against certain Common Council members.

And ditto for the Roosevelt Islander Blog: In Matt Katz's term as RIRA President, RIRA approved a policy that the RIRA agenda package could not be published, i.e., we are prohibited from sharing positions and proposed motions to our constituents until AFTER they are voted upon them. Thus, when RIRA is about to do something poor/wrong/bad, we Common Council members can get expelled from letting our neighbors know about it (so they might come to the RIRA Common Council meeting to complain in the public session). Yeah, Matt Katz's not-so-brilliant idea for quashing the minority's opinions, and making much of RIRA secret before decision-making.

Mr. Rindler makes this even worse by suggesting that people should paraphrase what someone is proposing but not reveal to our neighbors what the actual person's position/proposal/statement is. Why? Because, according to Mr. Rindler, it would allow the author of the faulty/problematic position/proposal/statement to deny that he/she said it.

Mr. Rindler has a terrible sense of ethics as it applies to RIRA practices and policies. It requires constant vigilance to keep track of these misguided and damaging ideas. The Ethics Committee, under Mr. Rindler, is not about transparency and fairness, it is about creating a framework for an express path to expulsion for Common Council members who have unpopular opinions.
I asked those mentioned by Mr. Farance if they cared to respond. None did other than Mr. Rindler who replied:
I am honored to be counted among the pantheon of civic leaders that Mr. Farance has attacked for trying their best to serve this community.
Today, Mr. Farance writes to RIOC President Indelicato expressing concern that RIOC may be reducing their financial contribution to Roosevelt Island Day.

RIRA President Jeff Escobar reports that the Common Council is currently on Summer Hiatus.

Awesome View Of Roosevelt Island New York City From International Space Station

According to NASA's Earth Observatory:

The narrow island of Manhattan, located between the Hudson River and the East River, is a familiar feature to crews on the International Space Station. The ragged line of shadow cast by the Palisades cliff (in New Jersey) crosses the bottom of the image. Wharves jut into the rivers; bridges are visible thanks to the shadows they cast; and the grid pattern of major streets stands out. On Manhattan itself, the main visual features are Central Park (with playing fields appearing as white dots) and two darker zones where the tallest buildings of Midtown and the Financial District cast long shadows even in this early afternoon view....

The picture was taken on May 5 2014 from the International Space Station.

Here's an up close view of Roosevelt Island from the International Space Station.

Click here for more information from NASA's Earth Observatory and larger sized picture.

Monday, June 9, 2014

What Happened To Roosevelt Island Southtown Lawn Maple Tree - Massive Branch Torn Away

Westviewer asks:

I've been out of town for a week and came back to see a massive tree limb torn away from one of the maple trees on the Southtown lawn near the subway station. Does anyone know what happened? There is a big black section in the wood at the point where the branch tore away. Is it some kind of illness or interior rot that caused the damage? Lightning?
Rebecca Knell shares picture of the damaged tree

and reports:
Oh dear, poor tree.
Another reader asks:
There is a huge branch of the tree down on the way to the subway. Practically, a tree. I hope nobody got hurt. Is there any info?
Does anybody know what happened to the tree?

Report From RIRA President Jeff Escobar - Roosevelt Island Day A Time For Fun And Giving Back To The Community - He Continues To Do An Outstanding Job Running RIRA Meetings

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) President Jeff Escobar

gave this report to the RIRA June Common Council Meeting requesting the Common Council Members reaffirm their commitment to RIRA during summer hiatus

and sends the following Report To The Community:
Dear Friends and Neighbors,

As the coolness of spring passes into the heat of summer, life on our little ship in the East River rolls forward. Open doors and windows are replaced by lulling fans and active air conditioners, family dinners around the kitchen table are now family barbecues around the picnic table, and our Island children no longer spend their days hard at work in class, but are hard at playing outside. From Saturday Night movies at Firefighters Field to Youth Baseball practice and pool parties, life on Roosevelt Island blooms fully into an idyllic picture of what summer should be in the middle of our sometimes crazy city.

As a kick-off to summer, I encourage all to attend this year’s Roosevelt Island Day on Saturday, June 21, for a day of family fun, games, rides, and more. Not only does Roosevelt Island Day allow us to come together and strengthen the bonds that make us a community, to meet neighbors old and new, and to have another excuse to be outdoors, but it is also a day when you, as a resident, can give back to the Island. Sometimes, in the fun and hoopla, it can be forgotten that Roosevelt Island Day was originally created as a day of Island service and beautification; a day when anyone and everyone is encouraged to pick up a shovel and plant new flowers and seedlings throughout the Island, to clean up and take care of Island areas that need attention, and to generally come together as a community to make this Island a more clean and beautiful place to live, work, and play. Interested in being a volunteer or want to help out? All you need to do is show up on Roosevelt Island Day and raise your hand, and you’ll be given a t-shirt and a task. We hope to see all of you there. Make sure that you come by the RIRA Hospitality Table early that morning to get some coffee and bagels for fortification.

In conjunction with Roosevelt Island Day and its theme of service to the community, RIRA continues to hold its annual Blood Drive at the Farmer’s Market, every Saturday through Roosevelt Island Day. If planting and repairing are not your fortes, but you still want to give back to our community, then consider signing up to give blood. It takes only a little to help so many.

Lastly, during July and August, the Common Council takes its summer hiatus to reset and make plans for the upcoming year of Council sessions. Because this is an election year, the tasks to be accomplished during the summer months are especially multiplied. Please take this time to reach out to your building representative, to voice concerns or goals that you wish for him/her to undertake in the upcoming sessions, and to ask any and all questions you may have. The success of the Common Council depends very much on each of you, as the community, to let the building representatives know what they can do to better serve you and the community. And, if you are interested in taking a seat at the Common Council table, please let your building representatives know, or contact me at Elections and campaigning begin in earnest in the fall, and we look forward to welcoming the new Council.
Mr. Escobar continues to do an outstanding job presiding over the RIRA Common Council meetings.

Roosevelt Island Drop In Constituent Office Hours With NY State Senator Jose M. Serrano Today 4-7 PM - Senator Serrano Enjoyed Roosevelt Island NYC Waterfront Views From The West Pier & The Tram Last Friday

Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano will be offering constituent drop in office hours at the Senior Center today from 4 -7 PM. Senator Serrano Tweets:

Senator Serrano was on Roosevelt Island last Friday evening meeting and greeting residents as well an enjoying the great views from the West Pier
and high above on the Roosevelt Island Tram.

Areas Of Roosevelt Island Getting A Makeover - Motorgate Atrium Getting A Cleaning With Power Washing Starting Today And AVAC Garbage Compound Debris Removed Last Week

Reported last week on the clean up of the Roosevelt Island AVAC garbage compound by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) together with local building staff and the NYC Department of Sanitation. Today RIOC is starting a clean up

Image of Motorgate Atrium Entrance

of the Roosevelt Island Motorgate Atrium.

Image Of Motorgate Atrium Interior

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
Beginning next Monday, June 9th at 8:30 AM, the Atrium of the Motorgate Parking Garage (628 Main St.) will undergo a power washing. This work is scheduled to be completed on or before Friday, June 13th. Sections of the Atrium will be temporarily closed to the public while the work is being performed. Use of the Atrium's elevators will not be affected.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Kayakers Paddling Past Roosevelt Island West Pier This Evening - Would You Like To Kayak From Roosevelt Island With The Long Island City Community Boat House?

Roosevelt Island photographer Francine Lange shares this picture and reports:

group of kayakers paddled by Roosevelt Island’s West Pier

 Image From Francine Lange

Sunday evening, around 7:30 p.m.
Would you be interested in East River kayaking from Roosevelt Island? The Long Island City Community Boat House members are interested in taking Roosevelt Islanders out on the East River for Kayaking trips. I have spoken to several Roosevelt Islanders who are interested. If you are too, let me know.

Here's more on the Long Island City Community Boat House East River kayaking.

Let's get in the East River - but in a Kayak of course.

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse shows more boats passing by us today: