Saturday, July 18, 2015

Both Roosevelt Island Manhattan Tram Station Elevators Out Of Service - RIOC To Provide Red Bus Shuttle For Those With Limited Mobility

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) issued this advisory at 1:39 PM:
The Manhattan Tram Station elevator and passenger lift are temporarily out of service. An advisory will be issued when service is restored.
and followed up:
Notification issued 07/18/2015 at 4:24 PM. Due to an elevator service outage at the Manhattan Tram Station, the RIOC Red Bus will provide special shuttle service to and from Manhattan for those with limited mobility. Schedule information is below.

ROOSEVELT ISLAND TO MANHATTAN: Departs hourly from the bus stop near 455 Main Street ( near Riverwalk Bar and grill) from 5:00 PM until 11:00 PM. Additional stops are located at 546 Main St. (opposite Good Shepherd Plaza) and opposite 645 Main Street (opposite P.S/I.S. 217).

MANHATTAN TO ROOSEVELT ISLAND: Departs hourly from the southwest corner of 58th Street and 2nd Avenue from 5:30 PM until 11:30 PM. Additional stops are located at 645 Main St. (P.S./I.S. 217), 579 Main St. (M&D Deli), 543 Main St. (Good Shepherd Plaza), 425 Main St. (Riverwalk Bar & Grill), and the Roosevelt Island Tram Plaza. 

If the outage continues through 7/19/2015 additional advisories with shuttle schedules will be posted. If you have any questions, please call the Public Safety Department at 212-832-4545. Thank you for your patience.
Here's what happened last February when both Tram Station elevators were out of service and RIOC operating a Red Bus Shuttle to and from Manhattan.

UPDATE 6:50 PM - Received this advisory from RIOC at 6:42 PM:
Following a previous outage, the Manhattan Tram Station passenger lift is back in service. The last Red Bus shuttle service to Manhattan will be at 7:00 PM 07/18/2015. The last Red Bus shuttle service to Roosevelt Island will be at 7:30 PM 07/18/2015. Thank you for your patience.

Friday, July 17, 2015

No Manhattan Bound Roosevelt Island F Train Service This Weekend

According to the MTA:
F Coney Island-bound trains run via the E from Roosevelt Av to Canal St, then via the A to Jay St-MetroTech

Weekend, 11:45 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Jul 17 - 20

Trains run express from Roosevelt Av to Queens Plaza.

No Coney Island-bound service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St, 57, 47-50 Sts, 42 St-Bryant Pk, 34 St-Herald Sq, 23, 14, B'way-Lafayette Sts, 2 Av, Delancey St, East Broadway and York St.


The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market

under the Motorgate Ramp is open early morning to mid afternoon on Saturdays in good weather and bad.

The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market features homegrown fruits,


grass fed chicken eggs 

 and much more including locally grown basil,

sweet corn

and zucchini.

Be healthy, eat locally grown at the Roosevelt Island Farmers Market.

Roosevelt Island Free Live Salsa Music Featuring Ola Fresca And Dance Instruction With Rodney Lopez At FDR Four Freedoms Park Saturday July 18

Image From Expat-Chronicles

The FDR Four Freedoms Park will be presenting Summer Sunset Salsa Dance Lessons with Rodney Lopez and musical performance by Ola Fresca Saturday July 18. According to the FDR Park:
Sunset Summer Salsa featuring Ola Fresca; dance instruction by Rodney Lopez

Saturday, July 18, 2015
4:00pm 7:00pm

Join us for a dance class followed by live music at the Park. Rodney Lopez will teach the audience salsa, Cuban, and timba. Then, Ola Fresca will perform Latin, Cuban, and salsa music. (Rain date: Saturday, July 25th.)

More info on the event at FDR Park web page.

Here's a taste of Ola Fresca performing

and Rodney Lopez salsa dance instruction.

Learn Skills To Fix And Maintain Your Bicycle From Bike NY At Roosevelt Island Sportspark Free Class Sunday July 19

Bike New York's Roosevelt Island Community Outreach Manager Caitlin Goodspeed reports:

We are hosting a free Bike Maintenance 101 class this Sunday from 1-3pm at Sportspark.

Our hands-on Bike Maintenance 101 class will give you the basic tools to fix flats, adjust brakes and derailleurs, clean and lube a chain, and perform minor adjustments that can have a significant impact on your ride quality.These skills will save you time, money, and give you a much better understanding—and appreciation—of your bike.

We encourage all people to register before the class although we will accept walk-ins.

Participants will receive a free patch kit!

Here is the registration link.

Our next summer ride will be on Thursday, July 23rd at 6pm. Meet under the Helix Ramp! 

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Gorgeous Pictures Of Roosevelt island Lighthouse

Bicycle Rider Breaks Leg In Car Collision On Roosevelt Island Bridge Helix Ramp Monday Evening - RIRA Recommends Closing Helix Ramp To Bike Riders

A bicycle rider was injured in a collision with a car on the Motorgate Helix Ramp to the Roosevelt Island Bridge last Monday July 13.

A resident reported Monday:

I think someone got run over on the ramp to RI bridge.possibly a biker. I can just see lots of police/nyfd
A spokesperson for the NYPD 114 precinct said on Tuesday:
... in regards to the collision yesterday on Roosevelt Island. It occurred on Monday, July 13, 2015 around 6 PM ... According to the accident report, the vehicle was heading up the Roosevelt Island ramp in his lane and the bicyclist was heading down the ramp in the same lane as the automobile. The bicyclist was traveling in the wrong lane. They collided coming around the bend. The bicyclist did hurt what appears to be his leg from the collision and was removed to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
There are conflicting versions of the July 13 bike accident on the Roosevelt Island Bridge Motorgate Helix Ramp. Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department (PSD) Chief Jack McManus told me that the Bike Rider and Car were going up the ramp in the same direction when the car hit the bike rider from behind resulting in the accident and a broken leg for the cyclist.

Asked to explain the discrepancy in accident reports, both NYPD and RIOC PSD said they were relaying the information told to them by the car driver and bike rider.

The issue of bicycle safety on the helix ramp was discussed during the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) July 14 Public Safety Committee (PSC) meeting.

Image Of Bike Rider Coming Down Helix Ramp Yesterday (not the injured rider)

The PSC unanimously voted to recommend closing the Motorgate Helix Ramp to bicycle riders. If the Motorgate Helix Ramp is closed to bicycle riders, they would have to take the Motorgate elevators or staircase instead to exit and enter Roosevelt Island.

The decision to close the ramp to bicyclists is up to RIOC.

Last October, a Roosevelt Island resident was killed riding her bike near the bottom of the Helix ramp in a collision with the Red Bus.

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

President Barack Obama Makes His Case For Iranian Nuclear Deal

NY Times columnist Thomas Friedman interviewed President Barack Obama on the Iranian nuclear agreement yesterday. According to the NY Times:

Only hours after the conclusion of an agreement with Iran to lift oil and financial sanctions in return for curbs on Iran’s nuclear capabilities, President Obama is a man who evinces no second thoughts whatsoever about the deal he struck. In a 45-minute interview in the Cabinet Room, the president kept stressing one argument: Don’t judge me on whether this deal transforms Iran, ends Iran’s aggressive behavior toward some of its Arab neighbors or leads to détente between Shiites and Sunnis. Judge me on one thing: Does this deal prevent Iran from breaking out with a nuclear weapon for the next 10 years and is that a better outcome for America, Israel and our Arab allies than any other alternative on the table?...
Click here for the full article.

Here's the fascinating interview of President Obama by Mr. Friedman.

Former Vice President Dick Cheney expresses his objections to the agreement yesterday on Fox News Sean Hannity program.

One Roosevelt Island Traffic Lane And No Parking Weekdays From 505 To 543 Main Street 8 AM - 6 PM Today Until Further Notice Due To Roosevelt Landings Building Facade Work

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
Urban American Management has advised that due to ongoing building facade work, Main St. will be reduced to one lane of traffic between 505 Main St. and 543 Main St. beginning Wednesday, 7/15/15, at 8 AM. In order to facilitate this work, there will be NO PARKING on the West side of Main St. between 505 Main St. and 543 Main St. Monday- Friday from 8 AM- 6 PM until further notice. Flag persons will be on site to redirect traffic during these times.

NYPD Rescues Man Attempting Suicide Jumping Into East River From Roosevelt Island Lighthouse Park Ledge Last Night

A reader reports today:

... my friend just wrote me "i was out in that east river park in the upper east last night and then we see all these emergency vehicles fly up to the northern tip of roosevelt across the way and there's a ton of people right by the water with flashlights and everything. then two helicopters came through shining spotlights on the water around that area....
The Twitterverse shows what happened
A NYPD Spokesperson adds:
... just after midnight there was a 32 year old emotionally disturbed male who attempted suicide by jumping off the ledge by the Light House. He was rescued and pulled from the water and removed to Elmhurst General Hospital for evaluation with no life threatening injuries.
UPDATE 8 PM - Here's what the scene at Lighthouse Park looked like from Queens.

Will have more later including key role Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department had in rescuing the man.

UPDATE 7/20 - More here.

Free Summer Gardening Program With A Living Library And Roosevelt Island NY Public Library For Parents And Kids 4-14 Every Tuesday And Thursday Afternoon - There's A Place For You

Bonnie Sherk of A Living Library reports:

You are invited to participate in a FREE Summer Program with A Living Library and the Roosevelt Island New York Public Library branch!

A Living Library is working with the Roosevelt Island Branch of the NY Public Library and we invite all RI Parents and Children (ages 4-14) to a wonderful summer of Garden Learning & Community in the RI Living Library & Think Park Gardens behind 504 Main Street.

Our FREE program, for parents and children goes until September 3rd, every Tuesday and Thursday, 2-4 pm - and we still have a place for you !

It is loads of fun and learning and there is room for all who would like to participate.

Come Talk, Think, Feel & Do with us. Do enlivening, enlightening Summer Garden Science, Literacy, and Multi-Arts projects. Join the FUN !

Gardens are convivial places to spend quality, happy time with your children and neighbors. Parents and children learn as they play, make new friends, socialize easily in a supportive environment. RI's rich, cultural diversity and history lends itself perfectly to our integrated program of gardening with bio & cultural diversity.

We learn with each other about our rich international heritage in the science and art of gardening and garden culture, multicultural cuisine, nutrition and health, and we enjoy our many garden festivals with with diverse arts: dance, music, songs, poetry, literature, painting and more.

We learn that our garden community of plants and insects, earth and sun, rain and sky, and diverse human cultures, brings us all together in A Living Library of diversity and earth ecology.

We delight in nurturing curiosity and wonder. Our projects support inquiring minds, independent thinking, scientific curiosity, self-motivated research, creative self-expression and multicultural celebration.

We are confident to provide you a memorable, happy, enlightening summer with your children and friends.

Please Join Us.

For more information 

Or call: Nicole Nelson, Manager, RI Public Library: 212-308-6243

Premilla Dixit Nag, A.L.L. Garden/Ecology/Literacy/Multi-Arts/Nutrition/Health Instructor: 845-443-0386

iDig2Learn Hosts Roosevelt Island Massive Milkweed Planting For Monarch Butterfly Corridor At Community Garden Saturday July 18 - You're invited!

iDig2Learn is a Roosevelt Island organization whose purpose:

... is to unite the community around the idea that city children benefit greatly from time outdoors in nature using their environment to explore science, math and the origin of food through plant life....
iDig2Learn's Christina Delfico reports:
iDig2Learn hosts a free Monarch Butterfly Corridor planting on Roosevelt Island this SAT July 18th from 11 AM to 3 PM Rain or shine. Meet at RI Community garden main gate at 11AM.

In partnership with the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC), Roosevelt Island Garden Club (RIGC), Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS), Roosevelt Island Youth Program (RIYP) and the Girl Scouts, iDig2Learn will host a planting of the milkweed plant that monarch butterflies, which have suffered a severe loss of habitat, heavily depend upon. These destinations will serve as a flight corridor for monarch butterflies on their migrations south to warmer weather every fall.

Thanks to generous grants provided by Citizens Committee for NYC, City Gardens Club of NYC and Grow to Learn NYC, and fiscal sponsors 217PTA and RI Youth Program, this event is free.

Please join us as we form a managed milkweed haven together and restore wildlife micro-habitats here on Roosevelt Island.

As previously reported, the planned Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 Green Roof will include a managed milkweed haven to serve as a flight corridor for monarch butterflies.

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Roosevelt Island Squirrel Enjoys Eating Apple In Front Of Onlookers - Then Scurries Away Seeking Privacy

There's something about watching a squirrel eating that people find fascinating and amusing. Here's a Roosevelt Island squirrel minding his own business chomping on an apple in front of onlookers before running away seeking a bit of privacy.

As previously reported, some Roosevelt Island squirrels enjoy their pizza sitting on a bench and don't mind anyone watching.

7th & 8th Graders Sign Up Now For Fun American Museum Of Natural History, Cornell Tech And Roosevelt Island Youth Program Summer Computer Coding And Bird Observation 2 Week Program

The Roosevelt Island Youth Program (RIYP) is partnering with Cornell Tech and the American Museum of Natural History to offer a 2 week summer program for 7th and 8th graders to study ornithology (study of birds) and coding in the Python computer language.

According to RIYP:
Roosevelt Island Youth Program Partners with Cornell Tech to offer exciting Coding off the Grid Program

It is Roosevelt Island Youth Program Beacon's pleasure to introduce a new and exciting opportunity for rising 7th Graders to work in collaboration with Cornell Tech this summer!  July 20th-31st, Cornell Tech and the Roosevelt Island Youth Program's Beacon and the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development will offer students entering 8th grade in the fall an optional 2-week program called "Coding off the Grid" that combines computer science and natural sciences.  The program has been developed by the American Museum of Natural History and will be led by Ms. Kelly Huang, science teacher at PS/IS 217.  Students will spend time outdoors observing birds and the natural environment, and indoors in the computer lab learning to code their observations. No prior knowledge is required for this class.

The program will last three hours every day for 2 weeks, starting at 9:00am and ending at 12:00pm, so students will be able to participate in other Beacon summer activities during the rest of their days.  Coding off the Grid includes two field trips to the American Museum of Natural History on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, on July 21st and 31st.  At the conclusion of the program, Cornell Tech will host a tech high school fair for all participants and their families.  There will be no charge for participating.

If you know of a 7th or 8th Grade student in our area who may be interested in this program, please contact the Beacon Office to receive an application at (212) 527-2505 or email us at
Cornell Tech Director Of K -12 Education Diane Levitt discussed summer program for PS/IS 217 students on the study of birds with the American Museum of Natural History, including learning how to code in Python language, during June 8 meeting of CB 8's Roosevelt Island and Education committees.

Here's what Ms. Levitt had to say

and a video of a student learning how to code colors in Python computer language.

Sign up now if you are a 7th or 8th Grader interested in this program by emailing or calling (212) 527-2505.

Monday, July 13, 2015

Manhattan Community Board 8 July 15 Full Board Meeting Outdoors At Roosevelt Island's FDR Four Freedoms Park Weather Permitting

  Image From Community Board 8

The Manhattan Community Board 8 July monthly meeting will be held outdoors at Roosevelt Island's FDR Four Freedoms Park. According to CB 8:
The July 15, 2015 Full Board meeting will be held at Four Freedoms Park on Roosevelt Island at 6:30PM. Please see the link below for directions to the park.

We are asking board members and members of the public to arrive early, it will take approximately 15 minutes from the F Train or Tram to get to the park and the meeting must end promptly at 8:30PM.

Anyone requiring disabled access, please contact the board office by Monday, July 13th so we can reserve a seat on a golf cart for you, each cart holds 5 people.

If there is inclement weather, the meeting will be moved to Manhattan Park Theatre Club, 30 River Road, Roosevelt Island. Please see the link below for directions to Manhattan Park Theatre Club.
The Manhattan Park Theater Club is at 8 River Road, not 30.

Here's the Agenda for CB 8 July 15 meeting on Roosevelt Island. There does not appear to be anything of particular relevance to Roosevelt Island on the Agenda but you never know.

Roosevelt Island Resident And Public Relations Expert Janet Falk Writes Lyrics For NPR Ask Me Anything Trivia Game - How Well Did You Play G-L-O-R-I-A?

Reported last year that Roosevelt Island resident and Public Relations expert Janet Falk

 Image from Falk Communications

was a contestant on a NPR trivia game show with her daughter. Ms. Falk reports today that she recently wrote a trivia game for NPR's Ask Me Another program. According to Ms. Falk:

My Game on NPR

You may have heard I was a contestant on Ask Me Another, the NPR trivia game show, in April 2014.

Perhaps you know one of my talents is re-writing the lyrics of popular songs, usually to celebrate the milestone birthday or anniversary of a family member.

You can hear the game I wrote based on the song Gloria, by Van Morrison. The guitarist of Ask Me Another, Jonathan Coulton, plays the melody and sings my revised lyrics. The contestants guess the name of the woman described -- and then sing and spell her name, like Van Morrison.

Listen to the segment or enjoy the entire show;...

Yes, I was paid for this game, but, more important, now I am a contributor to NPR; someday, that may be useful in my work as a Public Relations professional.

Please let me know how well you did playing the G-L-O-R-I-A game.
Here's the Spell My Name game created by Ms. Falk

How well did you play G-L-O-R-I-A?

Some Roosevelt Island Residents And Businesses As Well As Public Safety Department And RIOC Without Verizon Phone Service Since Last Week Due To Cornell Tech Campus Construction Phone Cable Cut

Some Roosevelt Island residents, businesses as well as the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) have been without Verizon phone service since last July 8 due to cable being accidentally cut at the Cornell Tech Roosevelt Island campus construction site.

According to this July 8 RIOC Advisory:
Please be advised that the Public Safety Department (550 Main Street) and the RIOC Offices (591 Main Street) are currently experiencing a telephone outage. To contact Public Safety during this outage, please call 212-832-4547 or 212-832-4548.

An advisory will be issued once service is restored. We appreciate your patience while we resolve this issue.
Roosevelt Island's Island House Management sent this July 9 memo to residents reporting:
...Verizon has confirmed there is a main phone cable failure in the area which has caused widespreaad outage throughout the Roosevelt Island area. Currently, all of our building phone lines are down...

... Verizon indicates the repair date could be as late as 7/21/15 and even that is not guaranteed...
The Twitterverse asked:
Amalgamated Bank was closed last week due to the Verizon phone cable cut

but according to its web site today:
Please be advised that phone service to our Roosevelt Island branch is temporarily suspended due to a cable service outage on the island. The branch is open for business; however, customers attempting to reach the branch by phone should instead contact our Customer Service Call Center at (800) 662-0860.
The Island Wine & Spirits Store is not able to accept credit card transactions but only cash due to the Verizon phone cable cut.

The Verizon phone service disruption is not affecting all of Roosevelt Island.

A Cornell Tech spokesperson said today:
One of the subcontractors working for Cornell Tech accidentally cut a cable which has affected Verizon service on Roosevelt Island. We have been in contact with Verizon who is working to restore service. We apologize and are doing everything we can to get Verizon to restore service as soon as possible.‎
In January 2014, Cornell Tech contractors cut an undocumented water main pipe during demolition of Goldwater Hospital. During January 29, 2014 meeting of the Cornell Tech Roosevelt Island Construction and Community Task Force:
... I asked Cornell NYC Tech Director of Capital Planning Andrew Winters and his contractors what is being done to insure similar occurrences do not happen again.

Mr. Winters asked Ted Musho, Vice President of Tishman Construction, who is overseeing the site work to explain what happened and measures being taken to prevent it from occurring again. According to Mr. Musho:

... metal detectors and ground penetrating radar...
will be used to prevent future similar occurrences but:
...the reality of it is that you got 70 years worth of utility work that is laid on top of the site that is not well documented. Its going to take alot of effort on our part when we go through there to do this...
Mr. Winters added:
... we've done about 12 or so borings around the site without incident ...    its an unfortunate occurrence. We're going to try and avoid it and do whatever we can in the future by being more aggressive...
Mr. Winters also explained that part of the construction project is to:
...upgrade every utility that's down there. Electric, water, sewer, storm, everything. Part of the upgrading is moving it into the right of way so that it is fully mapped and full accessible for the future.
Here's video of the full discussion,

the latest Cornell Tech Roosevelt Island Campus Project Update:
July 10 - July 24 Look Ahead

Roadwork and Central Utility Plant - Roadway work is occurring along the north transverse road with water line, sewer pipe and manhole installation taking place. Also at the north transverse road, Boiler-matic work will be occurring in preparation for the turnover on Saturday, 25 July. Work is also taking place on the east road with sewer, storm, and electrical utilities installation ongoing.

Co-Location Building – Excavation and foundation work is ongoing. This includes drilling rock anchors.

Residential Building – Site Preparation is still ongoing in the form of surveying and perimeter erosion control. Excavation for foundations is underway. Slabs and interior footings are also occurring.

Bloomberg Center – Basement Slab forming is ongoing with installation of utility chases and utilities happening concurrently. Basement foundation walls in the south section of the building is ongoing.
and scenes from June campus groundbreaking ceremony.

Sunday, July 12, 2015

Awesome View Of Roosevelt Island Tram From Way Up High

From the Roosevelt Island Twitterverse: