Friday, January 29, 2016

SPONSORED POST - Check Out Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket Product Specials & Sales January 29 Thru February 11 - 10% Seniors Discounts Tuesdays & Wednesdays And Sign Up For Bonus Savings Card Too

 Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket invites you to check out their:
  • Groceries, 
  • Organic & Gourmet, 
  • Snacks
  • Meat, 
  • Fresh Produce, 
  • Deli &;
  • Fresh Bakery
Department Offerings for January 29 - February 11 (Pages 1-4). Perishable Items (Page 5, 6) are for January 29 - February 4

Gristedes representative Bob Capano invites Roosevelt Island residents to check out their various product departments for all of your shopping needs.

Also, don't forget the 10% Roosevelt Island Seniors Discount on Tuesday and Wednesday and Sign Up For Gristedes Bonus Cards online or in person at the store.

More Gristedes Supermarket information available at their web site and Twitter feed.

Social Media Asks Yesterday For Roosevelt Island Riverwalk Commons Snow To Be Cleaned Up - Today's Snow From Blizzard Is Gone

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse asked yesterday for the snow to be removed from Riverwalk Commons area.

Today, the snow was gone.

Good Times Had To End - No Manhattan Bound Roosevelt Island F Train Service This Weekend - Tram Will Run On Rush Hour Schedule From 7 AM - 10 PM

According to the MTA Weekender:
F Coney Island-bound trains run local via the E from 71 Av to W 4 St Weekend, 11:45 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Jan 29 - Feb 1

No Coney Island-bound F service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St, 57, 47-50 Sts, 42 St-Bryant Pk, 34 St-Herald Sq, 23 and 14 St.
The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) adds:
The MTA has issued a weekend service advisory for the F train, which may affect travel plans. The Tram will run on a rush hour schedule from 7:00 AM until 10:00 PM to accommodate any increase in traffic. Please plan your travel accordingly and visit or call 511 for more information.

For electronic updates on F Train service, sign up for MTA Alerts at
Well,good times had to end. We had it good for the last 8 weekends with F train service to and from Manhattan.

Roosevelt Islanders Invited To Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer's State Of The Borough Address Sunday January 31 - Join The Interactive Conversation On Residents Most Pressing Concerns

Image From Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer

Roosevelt Island resident Christina Delfico reports that you are invited to Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer's State of the Borough Address:
Roosevelt Islanders Invited!
Manhattan State of the Borough is this Sunday, January 31, 2016
Hosted by Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer
Sunday, January 31st 2016 2PM / Event doors open at 1PM
Tishman Auditorium, 63 5th Avenue at 13th Street
RSVP to this free event and here how MBPO is supporting our borough:
state-of-the-borough free tickets

Join Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer for an interactive community conversation on residents’ most pressing concerns and the initiatives the MBPO is working on to address them. Borough President Brewer will welcome to the stage four Manhattan leaders with unique perspectives on the intersection of youth, culture, and other issues of interest to Manhattanites. Audience members are invited to live-tweet questions and comments using the hashtag #SOTB2016.

Panelists will include:
  • Marc Murphy, chef and television personality
  • Francisco Nuñez, director of the Young People's Chorus of New York City.
  • Khary Lazarre White, executive director and co-founder of The Brotherhood / SisterSol, a nationally-recognized organization based in Harlem providing supportive programming and services to youth.
  • Sumie Okazaki, Ph.D., policy fellow at the Coalition for Asian-American Children and Families (CACF) and professor at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development.
Click here for more information from Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer.

Report From RIOC President Charlene Indelicato - Roosevelt Island Construction Projects, Cornell Tech, Building Scaffolding Facade Work, High Pressure Gas Line, Permitting, Blizzard Snow Removal & More

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Charlene Indelicato reported on various construction projects including:

  • Cornell Tech,
  • Building scaffolding facade work,
  • High Pressure Gas Line,
  • Queensboro Bridge Feeder Cables and
  • Last Saturday's Blizzard Snow Removal
at the January 28 RIOC Board of Directors meeting.

Ms Indelicato and the RIOC Board members complimented RIOC staff for their efforts removing snow from Roosevelt Island's sidewalks and roads caused by last Saturday's blizzard.

RIOC Director Michael Shinozaki remarked that while walking on the street, he was thanked by residents for the work by RIOC in cleaning up after the blizzard.

Here's the  January 28 RIOC President's Report from Ms. Indelicato.

How Do You Measure Roosevelt Island Air Quality - Cornell Tech Campus Construction Insignificant Cause Of Roosevelt Island Air Pollution, Queensboro Bridge Traffic Far Greater Source Says Independent Expert From Barry Commoner Center

 Image Of Air Quality Monitoring Equipment From Frank Farance

Roosevelt Island resident Frank Farance helped organize a December 2015 meeting to discuss issues regarding air quality monitoring on Roosevelt Island. Among those participating in addition to Mr. Farance were:
  • Dr. Holger Eisl of the Barry Commoner Center for Health and the Environment at CUNY Queens College (Barry Commoner Center), 
  • Andrew Winters, Cornell Tech Director of Capital Projects
  • Staff from Roux Associates, currently doing air quality monitoring on Roosevelt Island for Cornell Tech and 
  • Ellen Polivy, Co-Chair of the Roosevelt Island Community Coalition (RICC).
The results of that meeting were discussed by Mr. Winters and Ms. Polivy during the January 25 Roosevelt Island Cornell Tech Construction & Community Task Force meeting. Here's the discussion.

Mr Farance provides this detailed report of the Roosevelt Island Air Quality Monitoring meeting.
I've been following up on several items regarding Roosevelt Island Air Quality (AQ) monitoring over the past 3-4 months, and I wanted to give you a progress report.

Earlier in the Fall, I was invited to and participated in Dr. Eisl's Air Quality Symposium, which included Federal, State, and City officials from various environmental, public health, community, and other organizations. In early December, there was a meeting of RICC, Cornell, and Queens College to exchange ideas and knowledge. I continue to work on this topic, but my positions have changed from where I was at in early 2014 with an AQ monitoring proposal for Roosevelt Island: I have been more informed by the science, the practice, the experience, and the politics -- of course, I still want better AQ for our community, for our neighbors, and our City, but I am a bit better informed upon how to proceed.


Several presenters spoke about how air quality improvements are being addressed. We heard from community leaders and their advocates. We heard from the EPA, NYS DEC (Department of Environmental Conservation), and NYC Department of Health in their approaches and successes. We heard from researchers who have been improving the knowledge of environmental sciences. We also discussed various topics. One topic I asked about, which was based upon some of the EPA and NYS DEC presenters' comments, was about various AQ instruments for monitoring. Essentially, the takeaway points from the discussion were:

(1) Air Quality is not like the other "Citizen Science" projects. While temperature and humidity might be crowd-sourced via amateur instruments, such as a home/school weather station, air quality is not as easily measured accurately. The AQ instruments, typically, are very expensive, require various calibration techniques, and require detailed knowledge for operation/maintenance.

(2) Amateur instruments have little use in enforcement. In other words, if your amateur instrument reads some high level of pollutant, it will not be enough to bring enforcement action against the polluter. Various data quality issues exist with amateur instruments.

(3) While Citizen Science and similar public efforts are, in general, good efforts, the measurement of air quality is significantly different in its observation requirements.

Although not expressed at this conference, Dr. Eisl has told me previously about failed efforts at the State level (NYS DEC) where they had tried the less expensive instruments but the effort had to be abandoned due to poor data quality. This is where Dr. Eisl's group has succeeded: getting better data quality that passes scientific muster and regulatory enforcement muster.


During the Fall, I had the opportunity to work with RICC's Ellen Polivy on improving AQ in and around our community. Ms. Polivy and I share much in common on this topic. Previously, I had spoken briefly with Andrew Winters of Cornell Tech on this topic who, as a new neighbor on Roosevelt Island, has their own interest in AQ on Roosevelt Island.

About a year ago, Dr. Holger Eisl of the Barry Commoner Center provided some feedback on the Cornell Demolition/Construction AQ Monitoring. Ms. Polivy (RICC) asked me to provide assistance in convening a meeting, which I did, and the meeting on December 2, 2015 included RICC (Ms. Polivy), Cornell staff, Roux Associates staff (the AQ monitoring firm at the site), and Dr. Eisl and his staff from Queens College. I was merely representing myself, and keeping the meeting agenda on-time and the discussion on-topic.

Ms. Polivy expressed RICC's concerns on AQ, including the various trucks and construction activity at the Cornell construction site, and other aspects that RICC had negotiated with Cornell. Ms. Polivy also expressed that she has other AQ concerns for Roosevelt Island and the Upper East Side, including the Marine Transfer Station.

Mr. Winters was interested in Dr. Eisl's feedback, an exchange of ideas, and any suggestions to Cornell on improving their AQ monitoring at the construction site. Mr. Winters brought staff from Roux Associates, the firm that is doing the AQ monitoring on Roosevelt Island.

Dr. Eisl gave a presentation on Queens College work and their scientific progress, including a recent adoption of City law that required annual reporting of AQ by the City's Department of Health. The NYCCAS (New York City Community Air Survey) is described at:

Dr. Eisl's organization has been performing those NYCCAS air quality surveys for the City's Department Of Health for almost a decade. Both the quality of Dr. Eisl's AQ surveys and their ability to transform and dramatically improve the City's AQ over the past five years have been key features of the work at Queens College, and enshrining this into law is an acknowledgement of their value to the City.

Dr. Eisl brought staff to the December meeting. In 2014, Dr. Eisl had presented some technical questions about the present AQ monitoring at the Cornell construction site. My goal was to have the stakeholders present with their support staff, both scientists and practitioners, to have an informative discussion and exchange of ideas. That goal was achieved: there was a discussion of various instruments (Dr. Eisl had brought several AQ instruments to the meeting)

Images Of Air Quality Monitoring Instruments From Frank Farance

and some of their measurement techniques, and a discussion of quality assurance and quality control techniques of the instruments, their measurements, and their data. An outcome of the meeting was that Roux Associates and Queens College would continue to exchange knowledge, techniques, and ideas.


At this meeting with RICC, Cornell, and Queens College, Dr. Eisl has expressed his experience with several community-led AQ initiatives. Dr. Eisl gave an illustration of the community in Harlem and their reaction to a change in bus technology at the 126 Street Bus Depot. The buses would be converted to cleaner fuels, which would produce reduced exhaust emissions. The community was interested because they were concerned about AQ and pollution levels, even if they were promised that the new buses would be "cleaner". The MTA was interested too because, with these new improvements to the buses, they could quantify both the cost and the AQ improvements.

For this site, Queens College performed "saturation monitoring", which is AQ monitors around and nearby the facility both before and after the changes. From the perspective of the size of the City, the saturation monitoring is at a "micro" scale in that it involves an area of approximately a handful of blocks, and it is real-time. The City-wide survey is at a "macro" scale in that the whole City is covered, but performed seasonally (four times a year). A prior RIRA proposal was at a "meso" scale in that several neighborhoods would be covered (Roosevelt Island, Upper East Side, western LIC/Astoria) and would include seasonal and real-time components. These various approaches are important to understand, especially when applied to Roosevelt Island.

At the end of the saturation monitoring effort at the 126 Street Bus Depot, while results showed some improvements of AQ for the new bus technology, the improvements were lost in the "background" of the AQ of its environment of the Triboro Bridge, the Harlem River Drive, Second Avenue, and such. In other words, while the community had hoped there would be some understanding of their AQ and improvements with the new bus technology, in fact there was little improvement because of the "background" air pollution that overwhelmed the improvements from the bus technology. Dr. Eisl said that these bus technology improvements at the 126 Street Bus Depot were just "noise" in the bigger picture, i.e., the AQ improvements were of little significance for that community.

Dr. Eisl mentioned that he has a similar hunch with the Marine Transfer Station (MTS) on the Upper East Side: Lots of community opposition, but pollutants from the MTS might be dwarfed by the local pollutants of the FDR Drive and oil-burning boilers of the Upper East Side -- in other words, a disappointing outcome for the local community, just like the 126 Street Bus Depot and some other community-led efforts. Dr. Eisl expressed concerns about such a myopic approach on AQ, in light of the "pollution soup" that we live in.


Ms. Polivy had expressed RICC's concerns about the large amount of truck traffic passing through our streets, including possible AQ concerns. Dr. Eisl's response reflected upon the above experiences:

(1) Compared to the amount of vehicular traffic on the Queensboro Bridge, the Cornell trucks might simply be "noise" (insignificant) in the measurement of AQ on Roosevelt Island -- a drop in the bucket. Note: As the 5th busiest City bridge, with 174,000 vehicle crossings per day (2014), the vehicular traffic at the Cornell construction side is three orders of magnitude less than bridge traffic, i.e., a thousand times more traffic on the Queensboro bridge than at the Cornell construction site.

(2) Several of the City's pollution maps look like a highway map: many of the pollutants come from vehicular traffic.

(3) Even if Roosevelt Island had real-time AQ monitoring, it could not pinpoint a single construction truck as a problem, and it could not provide that information in real-time (within minutes to apprehend the polluter) because the data requires processing and fusing, which would not give enough space-time resolution to pinpoint the offender immediately. Dr. Eisl felt that it would be difficult to isolate the offender within the "pollution soup" surrounding the area.

(4) Although Dr. Eisl has reviewed the Cornell AQ monitoring reports and there have been elevated levels, which stopped construction work while conditions were mitigated, Dr. Eisl expressed skepticism that the construction work stopped *in response* to an AQ monitoring alert: Dr. Eisl suspects that a dust cloud formed (due to some construction work), it was *visible* to the workers, they stopped work, and then hosed down the dust area, i.e., the workers might have anticipated the problem.


At the March 2014 RIRA meeting, as Chair of the RIRA Planning Committee, I had made a presentation on AQ monitoring, and I suggested that RIRA approve a resolution making the request for AQ monitors on Roosevelt Island. RIRA was supportive of the resolution. However, around the same time we learned at that the City Council had broader support for Dr. Eisl's AQ monitoring City-wide, and the City's Department of Health (DoH) felt that putting 6 AQ monitors on Roosevelt Island did not make sense, i.e., it was not a wise use of a City resource concentrated on Roosevelt Island meanwhile other communities had similar needs.

Our reaction, as residents of Roosevelt Island, was to look for alternate funding sources to acquire the AQ monitoring service on Roosevelt Island (5-6 AQ monitors). Our community focused upon the 2014-2015 Participatory Budget cycle as a source of funds. The Roosevelt Island delegation of District 5 (Councilmember Ben Kallos) put forth a proposal for funding the AQ monitors, it had unanimous support from our delegation and was our delegation's highest priority. To make a long story short, the City's DEP is not the right agency to fund these AQ monitors and the City's DoH does not believe these are "capital" projects within the criteria and rubric for Participatory Budget projects. Simply, any kind of AQ monitoring equipment needs to be funded via the "normal" methods of the City budget. (Note: Our Councilmember has been supportive of our interests.)

Recently, Dr. Eisl's team was able to reduce the AQ monitors City-wide from 150 to 75, yet still maintain the same data quality for their air quality surveys. This is good science, and this is good government administration (same quality, reduced cost). However, this affects Roosevelt Island and its desire for AQ monitors: if Dr. Eisl were to recommend additional AQ monitors for Roosevelt Island, it would mean that Dr. Eisl did not "trust" his own AQ monitoring system to accurately measure air quality City-wide, i.e., the reduction of 150 to 75 monitors would not be sufficient because Dr. Eisl would believe additional monitors were necessary (such as on Roosevelt Island).

Thus, Dr. Eisl recommends no additional AQ monitors for the City-wide 75-monitor network, which were the kind RIRA requested in March 2014. These AQ monitors are seasonal monitors, they are very accurate (but they are not real-time).

Dr. Eisl has a small set of real-time AQ monitors throughout the City, I believe the number is approximately 20-25, and it does not yet provide the complete, comprehensive coverage of the City.

Dr. Eisl expressed that it might make sense to have 1-2 real-time AQ monitors on Roosevelt Island, but with the following understanding and caveats:

- The real-time AQ monitors would not be able to track down individual polluters such as Cornell construction vehicles or a barge from the Marine Transfer Station, and certainly not track them in real-time.

- We (Roosevelt Island) live in a "pollution soup" that makes it hard to track down individual pollution sources.

- The Queensboro Bridge is probably our biggest source, along with Upper East Side oil-burning boilers and the FDR Drive.

- The placement of a real-time AQ monitor might make sense on the Queensboro Bridge: not because of Cornell construction, but because of the vehicular traffic on the Queensboro Bridge is a large polluting source; and the placement of the real-time AQ monitor might make sense on the Queensboro Bridge at bridge level itself. Other siting locations are possible, too.

Thus, the Roosevelt Island real-time AQ monitors might be reasonable for *City-wide* benefit, but Roosevelt Islanders should not expect a direct, local, and immediate benefit for their community.

I took Dr. Eisl and staff for a drive around the neighborhood, including Roosevelt Island, Astoria, and Long Island City. He has a better sense of our community and neighboring communities.


1. Cornell's firm Roux Associates and Queens College were able to engage in productive discussions of the science and practice, and discuss the AQ monitoring at the Cornell construction site. I expect that they will continue their dialogue, including RICC. (Thanks, Ellen Polivy, for suggesting this meeting.)

2. Community-led AQ initiatives sometimes don't have the outcome expected by the community. As was the case for the 126 Street Bus Depot, the site's pollution with a drop-in-the-bucket compared to pollution sources surrounding the site (Triboro Bridge, Harlem River Drive, Second Avenue, etc.). The same might be the case for Roosevelt Island, with polluting sources from the Queensboro Bridge (174,000 vehicles a day), the FDR Drive, the Upper East Side oil-burning boilers, Ravenswood power plant, and other sources.

3. High quality instruments (not amateur instruments) are necessary for measuring air quality, and trained staff are necessary to operate/maintain the instruments.

4. It is difficult/impossible to tease out a single (mobile) polluting source, such as an individual construction vehicle, with real-time AQ monitors and discovered in real-time.

5. It is difficult/impossible to tease out different pollution sources in the "pollution soup" that we live in.

6. Adding more AQ monitors for Roosevelt Island, of the seasonal variety, makes no sense because the present City-wide survey provide comprehensive coverage, including Roosevelt Island.

7. Adding 1-2 real-time monitors on Roosevelt Island might make sense, but it should be coordinated with the City's real-time AQ monitoring program and the City's needs, and it should be owned/operated by the City and Queens College. It makes no sense to have such a standalone AQ monitoring system on Roosevelt Island.

8. We of Roosevelt Island should focus our air quality concerns in the direction of: supporting regional concerns within the City (UES, Astoria/LIC, RI) rather than just Roosevelt-Island-only or Community-Board-8-only concerns. This makes more sense from scientific, budgeting, and political perspectives.
Mr. Winters said of Mr. Farance's report:
I think it is an accurate record of the conversation.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Celebration Honoring Memory Of Roosevelt Island Resident Paul Sokoloff Saturday January 30 At Roosevelt Island Youth Center - Remembered As Coach, Fan & Friend

Roosevelt Island Youth Program Executive Director Charlie Defino reports:
Paul Sokoloff a Roosevelt Island resident, businessman and volunteer for the Roosevelt Island Youth Program died on November 10th, 2015. In his memory the Sokoloff family and friends will hold a Memorial gathering for Paul at the Roosevelt Island Youth Center at 506 Main Street on January 30th, from 1pm to 3pm. We hope that everyone will join us in celebrating Paul's generous life.

Roosevelt Island Woman Punched In Face For Asking Person Walking Dog To Clean Up Dog Waste - Dogs Problems Are Getting Out Of Hand Says Resident At RIRA Public Safety Committee Meeting

A woman was punched in the face yesterday on Roosevelt Island for asking an individual walking a dog to clean up the dog waste. Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department Deputy Director Lynda Marmara reported the incident during last evening's Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee (PSC) meeting.

Here's what Deputy Director Marmara said.

PSD Deputy Director Marmara, Director Jack McManus and the RIRA PSC committee discussed RIOC dog enforcement policy and procedures regarding:

  • cleaning up dog waste,
  • keeping dogs on leash and
  • not allowing dogs on fields with No Dogs Allowed Signs
 No Dogs On Firefighters Field Sign

Deputy Director Marmara reported that Public Safety Officers must witness a person not picking up the dog waste in order to issue a summons. A picture of the occurrence is not sufficient. Only one summons has been issued in the past year for not picking up dog waste added Deputy Director Marmara. An education campaign to inform Roosevelt Island dog owners of their responsibilities was suggested by Deputy Director Marmara as a first step.

Here's the discussion from last night's PSC meeting.

A Roosevelt Island resident reported earlier this week:
I found some dog owners carelessly behave too often in this Island, especially behind of Roosevelt Landings.

... Whatever it takes, this problem has to be corrected.

I pick up some unpleasant dog's waste by myself when it's dropped middle of path, because I am afraid to step on it after dark.

Please do something about it.

UPDATE 4:15 PM - Another Roosevelt Island resident reports:
As an owner of TWO dogs, I agree 100% it is out of control. I am originally from Canada and cannot believe how many people do not cleanup after their pets here. We previously lived in Manhattan (disgusting level of dog waste) the island is starting to rival the city! And bags & bins are provided! How much more do you need. Sheer laziness! They should give HUGE fines, HUGE!!!
and another:
From RWalk bar today I saw a lady walk 2 dogs onto the grass area. She completely ignored the sign that clearly shows no dogs allowed. She cleaned up after them. Fair enough but how do you clean up urine? This green is used everyday by little kids. No respect. It's always been a problem.

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Residents Association Public Safety Committee Meeting Tonight - Motorgate Helix Signage, PSD Officer Training, Building Vertical Patrols, Dog Rules Enforcement, Complaints & More On Agenda

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee is meeting tonight 7 PM at the Westview Community Room (595 Main Street, Lower Level).

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department Director Jack McManus and Deputy Director Lynda Marmara will be attending.

 Image Of PSD Jack McManus, Lynda Marmara & RIRA's Erin Feely-Nahem at 12/14 Meeting

Below is the Agenda for tonight's meeting.
RIRA Public Safety Committee

Helix Signage
Officer Training
Vertical Patrols
RL issues
Dogs / clean up / playground rules / enforcement
Emergency Access
Parking Areas for unloading
New Business
Come to the meeting, share your thoughts and find out what is going on.

Roosevelt Island Parks Re-Open Today Following Saturday's NYC Blizzard Says RIOC - Take A Look At Beautiful Snow Covered FDR Four Freedoms Park

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) reported on January 24:

Due to heavy snowfall from the blizzard, all Roosevelt Island parks remain closed today, Sun., Jan. 24th. Advisories will be issued to update the public on future developments.
RIOC reports today:
All Roosevelt Island parks, including Four Freedoms Park, have been re-opened.
The FDR 4 Freedoms Park tweets
and shares these photos taken during Saturday's Blizzard at FDR Four Freedoms Park.

FDR Four Freedoms Park was open Sunday January 24.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Of Directors Meeting January 28 - Selection Of Law Firms For Development And Labor Counsel & Extension Of Garden Club License Agreement On Agenda

 Image Of September 2015 RIOC Board Meeting

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors will be meeting tomorrow, January 28 (Web cast will be available here). Below is the Agenda:

5:30 P.M.1

I. Call to Order
II. Roll Call
III. Approval of Minutes
1. December 3, 2015 Board Meeting (Board Action Required)
IV. Old Business
V. New Business

1. Authorization to Enter into Contracts for Development Counsel Legal Services (Board Action Required)
2. Authorization to Enter into Contracts for Labor & Employment Law Counsel Legal Services (Board Action Required)
3. Authorization to Amend the License Agreement with the Roosevelt Island Garden Club, LTD (RIGC) (Board Action Required)
4. President's Report
5. Committee Reports
a. Audit Committee
b. Governance Committee
c. Operations Advisory Committee
d. Real Estate Development Advisory Committee
6. Public Safety Report

VI. Adjournment
1 The RIOC Board Meeting will commence following a public comment period. The public comment period is not part of the meeting.
Below are memos of support from RIOC Staff to the RIOC Board for:

RIOC Labor Counsel RFP

and the RIOC Roosevelt Island Garden Club License extension

Roosevelt Island Main Street Blizzard Snow Emergency Parking Ban Lifted Noon Today - Motorgate Snow Emergency Courtesy Parking Over 6 PM Today

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) reports:

As of 12 pm today Wednesday January 27th, 2016, the Main Street parking ban due to the snow emergency has been lifted. Vehicles may be parked on Main Street at that time. All vehicles parked in the Motorgate Garage under the snow emergency courtesy must be removed by 6 pm today, January 27, 2016
Most vehicles were removed from Main Street during the snow emergency parking ban

but not


RIOC Public Safety Director Jack McManus adds:
The RIOC team appreciates the help given by Roosevelt Island residents during this snow emergency
We appreciate the work done by RIOC, building managements and residents as well.

Please Answer Roosevelt Island Residents Association Community Survey Questions - Help Provide A Snapshot Of Life On Roosevelt Island

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council Community Polling Chair Adib Mansour reports:
The Roosevelt Island Residents Association announces the launch of a comprehensive survey that will take a snapshot of residents’ life on the island.

This survey is an important tool for reaching out to neighbors, to assess a wide range of issues and obtain meaningful, actionable feedback. It will help RIRA gather data to identify areas of future action. The process will help us understand the demographics of our island, and the programs of possible interest to residents.

The RIRA Survey addresses aspects of life on Roosevelt Island, including:
  • Building Specifics, such as safety, vandalism, maintenance, and Public Safety Department vertical patrols;
  • General Island issues including traffic, pot holes on Main Street, variety of stores/merchants, parking, signage, and accessibility;
  • Public Safety and the changes since Chief McManus implemented reforms requested by residents;
  • Motorgate issues, including elevator malfunction, lighting, safety, accessibility, cement dripping and management;
  • Health Concerns such as air quality, cleanliness of drinking water, and free CPR lessons from RIRA experts;
  • Transportation issues connected to the tram, red busses, and subway;
  • Engagement with Young Adults and whether the community is addressing their needs;
  • Helix Ramp and safety for bikers, plus adequate signage;
  • Seniors and adequate services.
The Survey is easy to read. It may be completed in less than 3 minutes. RIRA wishes to reach EVERYONE on the Island. For this comprehensive survey to work, we must hear from all the residents in all the buildings. Everyone can participate using their own email address. Please encourage your friends and neighbors to participate in the Survey.

Printed surveys will be available at the Public Safety Office and the Public Library. In addition, volunteers will be at the Public Library with a computer station to help residents complete the survey online (times to be posted at the Public Library). We will endeavor to provide translation service at no cost whenever possible.

The URL for the survey is:

Please complete the Survey before Friday, February 12, 2016.

RIRA will announce the Survey results at the Common Council meeting on Wednesday, March 2, 2016. We will work closely with RIOC and local elected officials to resolve the issues that are the highest priority.

For additional information, contact Adib Mansour at
Please click here to answer the Roosevelt Island Survey.

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Good Shepherd Community Center Closed January 28-30 Due To Chapel Floor Re-Surfacing Says RIOC - Will It Be Finished For Sunday Religious Services?

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):

Please be advised, due to floor re-surfacing, the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street) will be closed starting Thursday, January 28th through Saturday, January 30th. The Center will reopen for normal operating hours on Sunday, January 31st. We apologize for any inconvenience.
Frank Farance shares these photos of the new

Image From Frank Farance

Good Shepherd Chapel Floor.

Image From Frank Farance

As reported Monday, January 11, the Good Shepherd Community Center Chapel Floor was replaced earlier this month.  Members of Roosevelt Island religious organizations that use the Chapel say that they were not given adequate notice of the floor replacement and:
... that Church objects were damaged and worship services disrupted due to the floor replacement...
RIOC disputes that adequate notice was not given to the religious groups about the floor replacement.

Hopefully, the Chapel Floor re-surfacing will be completed in time for Sunday services.

NYC Blizzard Brings Nearly 30 Inches Of Snow To Roosevelt Island - RIOC And Building Management Clean Up Of Roads And Sidewalks Is Pretty Good

 Image Of Roosevelt Island Blizzard From Joyce Short

Last Saturday's NYC Blizzard brought nearly 30 inches of snow to Roosevelt Island according to the FDR Four Freedoms Park.
How did Roosevelt Island do cleaning up the roads and sidewalks from the January 23 NYC Blizzard. Very well, according to this tweet by a resident.
For the most part, a good job was done by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) and building managements making Roosevelt Island roads and sidewalks accessible  for pedestrians and vehicles on Sunday. the day after the blizzard.

Except on Sunday there were portions of Main Street sidewalk at the Riverwalk Commons,

in front of Island House,

and Manhattan Park

that were not plowed, making it very difficult to walk in those areas.

Also, the Good Shepherd side entrance was not plowed either. until a couple of residents decided to do it themselves.

On Monday, the snow around Riverwalk Commons

Island House

and Good Shepherd

areas were removed.

But the snow by Manhattan Park remained.

RIOC President Charlene Indelicato had this to say about the Roosevelt Island response to Saturday's blizzard:
Building Managers were invited to a pre snow meeting to discuss plans for the storm. Some building managers showed – others did not. We will reach out to all again stressing the importance of such meetings.

We also intend to look at all the leases and delineate responsibilities in accordance with the leases. On first glance, it does appear that some buildings and businesses, if not all, are responsible for their sidewalks and adjoining areas. This being said, RIOC has always tried to attend to our roadways and sidewalk areas to insure the safety, health and welfare of the public.

We will be meeting with the individual managers of the buildings and businesses to develop a coordinated effort of keeping roads and sidewalks clear of snow/ice and debris.

I believe that working together we will have even better results than we have now.

I also would like to take this opportunity to thank all who worked so hard to clean the Island. I would ask Jack Mc Manus, Cy Opperman, Fernando Vargas and Juan Rivera please share with your respective teams my heartfelt gratitude for a job well done. The snow was record and the effort as well.
Frank Farance comments and shares these photos: 
Pedestrian safety hazard fixed just before storm, thanks to PSD Director Jack McManus. Stepping in the hole would have been a broken ankle or leg - not mention a snow plow lifting up plates.

Construction crew closed the hole and welded the plates together.

RIOC's incomplete shoveling job, no way for handicap users to access Sunday's 8:15 Mass.

By Monday, most of the Roosevelt Island roads and sidewalks

were clear of snow.

Good job by RIOC, building management and residents
removing most of the snow from Roosevelt Island roads and sidewalks.

For comparison, here's a report on the blizzard clean up in Queens.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Awesome Video Of Snowboarding Streets Of New York City During Saturday's Blizzard - But Not On Roosevelt Island

Casey Neistat and friends decided to go out in Saturday's NYC Blizzard.

Watch what happens.

Click on full screen icon for better view.

Here's how the Snowboarding With NYPD video was made.

Nothing that exciting on Roosevelt Island during Saturday's Blizzard but we did have a some

cross country skiers.

Report From Roosevelt Island Community Coalition - You're Invited To Cornell Task Force Meeting Tonight, Apply To Serve On Community Board 8 & More

 Image of Cornell Tech Campus Construction Seen From Roosevelt Island Tram

As previously reported:
The Roosevelt Island Cornell Tech Community and Construction Task Force (Task Force) invite you to their January 25 meeting.
... we will have a presentation from Nontraditional Employment for Women (NEW). NEW prepares women for nontraditional careers in the construction, utilities, and transportation industries. It will be great to learn about their programs and to introduce them to Roosevelt Island....

The Roosevelt Island Community Coalition (RICC) reports today:
Reminder: Cornell Tech Meeting tonight confirmed 6-8PM - 546 Main Street, in the 12th Flr

Tonight's meeting is on, please join us.

And if you can not attend please email any concerns relating to Cornell Tech on the island.

RICC board members continue to stay involved with our elected officials and have attended important events such as the Dec 2015 Cornell Tech / 217 Start Up Event Presentation by Cornell rep about their roadmap for PS 217 and City Council Member Ben Kallos' State of the District.

Here are upcoming meetings we hope you can attend. Please spread the word to your members.

Please attend: Cornell Tech Community & Construction Task Force Meeting (public)
Monday, January 25th 2016 6-8 PM 546 Main Street, in the 12th Floor conference room

Note: Kicking off the meeting from 6-6:30 PM there will be a presentation by the Nontraditional Employment for Women organization (NEW, They specialize in training women for future employment in the construction, utilities and transportation industries. Please be prompt. For more information, please contact Jane Swanson Government and Community Relations at

Save the date: Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer 2016 State of the Borough:
Sunday, January 31st 2016 2PM
RSVP to this free event and hear how MBPO is supporting our borough:
state-of-the-borough free tickets

Watch RICC Co-Chair & CB8 member Ellen Polivy interviewed Assembly Member Rebecca A. Seawright to find out how residents can make change through her office and legislation in Albany, NY.

Want to serve as a Community Board Member? Deadline 5PM January 29th, apply here: community board applications

Future meetings:

2016 Cornell Tech Community Construction Task Force meetings:
January 25, April 25, July 25, October 24
All meetings are from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm - open to the public
In an effort to continue an open dialogue between Cornell Tech and the community, this task force will meet quarterly.

Monday, 1/25 at 546 Main St. 12th Floor
Monday, 4/25 at Gallery RIVAA, 527 Main St.
Monday, 7/25 at Gallery RIVAA, 527 Main St.
Monday, 10/24 at 546 Main St. 12th Floor

Reminder, if you have concerns about construction or vehicles, please note the time, date, location, name on the truck and license plate and contact Jane Swanson at or (646) 632 4907 for immediate action.

Ellen Polivy and Judy Buck
RICC Co-Chairs
More information about RICC available at their web site.

Roosevelt Island Cornell Tech Jobs Available - Senior Director Of Facilities Operations, Mobil Apps Developer, User Experience Designer, Program Coordinator To Increase Women In Computer Science & Financial Account Reps

 Are you looking for a job on Roosevelt Island?
If yes, Cornell Tech may have a job for you as Senior Director of Facilities Operations. According to the Cornell Tech Careers web site:
Senior Director of Facilities Operations, Cornell Tech-30654


Cornell University is building a new Cornell Tech campus on Roosevelt Island in New York City set to open in summer 2017. The Senior Director of Facilities Operations for Cornell Tech will plan, build, develop and lead campus safety and facilities operations for the campus. As a key member of the campus leadership team, this role includes significant responsibility in effectively interfacing with Cornell Tech campus and University Officials (both in NYC and Ithaca), representatives from development partners, contractors, community and regulatory officials. Operations include: maintenance and operation of physical facilities; grounds; waste management; custodial; building management systems and maintenance; events & space planning; food service; energy management; emergency planning and response; and safety and security; health and environmental compliance. The incumbent will lead planning, developing, budgeting and implementing cost effective and excellent service delivery throughout the campus. This includes coordinating with development partners owning and operating campus buildings, including a residential and corporate co-location building, as well as public open spaces and community programming. Also included in responsibilities is sourcing and management of vendor contracts as well as service delivery. Establishing and maintaining strong relationships with key stakeholders is critical for success. As a leadership role within Cornell Tech and Cornell University, this position includes significant responsibility in effective collaboration across campuses as well as compliance with and development of policies, procedures and practices consistent with the mission of Cornell Tech and Cornell.

We expect to fill this position immediately as planning is underway for campus completion in mid-2017. We anticipate that the role will focus on planning and resourcing prior to campus completion at which time the role will shift to management of campus safety and facilities operations through a mix of internal resources and vendor relationships....
Click here for more job information, qualifications, responsibilities and to apply for the Cornell Tech Senior Director of Facilities Operations.

More Cornell Tech job listings here, including:
Good luck.