Friday, February 9, 2018

Roosevelt Island Saturday Farmers Market Temporarily Moving To Good Shepherd Plaza Starting February 17 During 4 Month $3.1 Million RI Bridge Helix Ramp Repairs

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) will begin repair of the Roosevelt Island Bridge Helix Ramp

starting February 15 resulting in use of one ramp traffic lane 

 and temporary relocation of the Saturday morning Farmers Market

 to Good Shepherd Plaza.

According to RIOC Public Information Officer Alonza Robertson:
The $3.1 million Helix ramp and flat plaza repair job that’s starting Thursday, Feb. 15 will trigger at least two other major impacts on Roosevelt Island during the 120 days of construction.

The deteriorating 40-year-old structure, a high-traffic spiral road which connects the Island to the Roosevelt Island Bridge to Queens (at Vernon Boulevard and 36th Avenue), handles all incoming and outgoing car, truck and school bus traffic. As to be expected, the repair will slow traffic pace as vehicles will be restricted to one lane of use while the adjacent lane is repaired. Motorists are encouraged to plan for increased travel times in both directions.

The repair – which is part of a $33 million capital improvement program for the Island this fiscal year - is also forcing the relocation of the long-standing Farmers Market from the Helix Plaza to Good Shephard Plaza, 541 Main Street, beginning next Saturday, February 17. Vendors at the popular Saturday market, a long-time Island staple run by the PS/IS 217 Parent Teachers Association, will be given a walkthrough this set-up Saturday to familiarize themselves with the new open space, truck parking locations, electrical outlets and other logistics.

(The current proposed plan is to allow vendor vehicles to enter along the north side of the Good Shepard Chapel and park on the west side. Their tents and tables will be set up in the plaza along the north side of the chapel. Vehicles will exit along the south side once the market closes).

Roosevelt Island construction contractors and businesses employing delivery truck drivers also have been notified of vehicle length and load restrictions during the Helix repair. Large and oversize vehicles are now required to notify the Island’s Department of Public Safety, 212.832.4545, at least 48 hours in advance and to request an escort onto and off the Island as needed between 9 a.m. and 2 p.m. only.

The Helix repair job - which includes waterproofing, concreate patch infill, rebar splicing, road resurfacing and railing replacements - is being completed by Specialty Construction Systems Inc., a structural engineering firm based in Mount Vernon, N.Y. and is the same firm that is contracted to resume and complete the Roosevelt Island Tram platform repairs this spring. Other local projects, the company has previously completed include structural repair work on the Lincoln Center west garage and tunnel, the Port Authority Bus Terminal and Pier 40 at Hudson River Park’s parking garage and sports facility.
As previously reported, the Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 PTA has been the long time operator of the Farmers Market, using fees from the market vendors for their programs and services. In April 2017, RIOC issued the PTA a no fee permit, terminable at any time by RIOC, to operate the Farmers Market. Prior to April 2017,  the PTA operated the Farmers Market, on RIOC property, without any agreement from RIOC for use of the area.

Recently, another group expressed interest in operating a Roosevelt Island Green Market. The subject was discussed during November 30 RIOC Operations Advisory Committee.

Sponsored Post - Roosevelt Island Local Hometown Fusion Salon For Your Hair Care Services

Welcome to Roosevelt Island's local, hometown Fusion Salon

located at 523 Main Street (212-688-0055).

Our mission has always been to provide exceptional hair care services in a modern, relaxed and comfortable atmosphere. We provide the finest selection of professional hair care products – We are a Certified Bumble and Bumble Concept Salon featuring expert hair care, cuts, styles, highlights and color. Our experienced stylists are dedicated, well trained professionals who provide our clients with a phenomenal salon experience that will allow you to always look your best.

At Fusion Salon We have created a warm and friendly family atmosphere where our aim is to always exceed your expectations and to ensure a superb experience time and time again.

At Fusion Salon we are always happy to discuss your hair care needs or styling questions. Ask your stylist which products or treatments are most appropriate for your type of hair. We appreciate how important your hair is and how it affects the way you feel.

Please review our services, pricing and special packages.

Fusion Salon hours are:
  • Tuesday – Saturday 9am – 7pm
  • Sunday 10am – 7pm
  • Monday – Closed
Please stop by our shop at 523 Main Street, call 212-688-0055 or email us.

We look forward to working with you on your individual hair needs.

Good News, Roosevelt Island F & E Train Service To And From Manhattan This Weekend - No Metro Card Vending Machine Credit Card Transactions Very Early Saturday Morning

According to the MTA, there will be Roosevelt Island F Train service

to and from Manhattan this weekend. Also, there will be E Train Service to Roosevelt Island:
SIGNAL MAINTENANCE E Trains run via the F in both directions between 21 St-Queensbridge and 2 Av

Weekend, 9:45 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Feb 9 - 12
Plan on no credit card transactions at Metro Card machines early Saturday morning. According to the MTA:
The Metropolitan Transportation Authority (MTA) announced that during the very early morning hours Saturday, Feb. 10, between 12:01 a.m. and 6:00 a.m, MetroCard Vending Machines will not process credit and debit transactions. The overnight timing of the upgrade was chosen for when ridership is at its lowest and will help minimize the impact on the vast majority of New York City Transit customers. All machines will be accepting credit and debit cards again beginning at on Saturday, Feb. 10. This upgrade impacts all MetroCard Vending Machines, in subway stations, PATH stations, the JFK AirTrain system and at LaGuardia Airport.

Thursday, February 8, 2018

Single Roosevelt Island Tram Cabin Operating 6 Days Starting February 26 For Service & Inspection Work Says RIOC - Red Bus Shuttle To Manhattan Operating Afternoon/Evening Peak Hours Every 30 Minutes - Single Tram Cabin Operating For 3 Weeks In Spring Too

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating (Corp):

Regularly scheduled maintenance on the Roosevelt Island Tram will reduce commuter service to one aerial cabin during a six-day period starting Monday, February 26.

Service and inspection work will render one car offline for three days and then the work will switch to the second car through Saturday, March 3. To assist with overcrowding during this period, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation will operate a Red Bus shuttle during the afternoon/evening peak period, every 30 minutes to and from the Island to Manhattan.

The shuttle will leave Roosevelt Island – from the Tram Station plaza - to Manhattan at 3 p.m., 4 p.m., 5 p.m., 6 p.m. 7 p.m. and 8 p.m. The shuttle will leave Manhattan – from the Southwest side of Second Avenue between 58th and 59th streets - for Roosevelt Island at 3:30 p.m., 4:30 p.m., 5:30 p.m., 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.

There will be no Tram shuttle service on Saturday, March 3.
As we all recall, from last July 24 - December 17 the Roosevelt Island Tram operated a single cabin during the Tram Station Repair Project resulting in very long lines and frustrated residents.
Both Tram cabins have been operating since December 18 to the relief of Roosevelt Island residents. But RIOC announced last December that Tram Station repair work remained to be completed:
... Both tram cars will remain in operation until the spring. RIOC anticipates that only one tram will be in operation for a period of three weeks to complete the renovations during that period....
Earlier today, I asked RIOC Public Information Officer Alonza Robertson:
In December, RIOC announced that the Tram Station Repair Project will require a single cabin to operate for 3 weeks this Spring.

Is the February 26 week Tram maintenance work described in advisory below separate from the work on Tram Platform?

Will there still be Single Tram Cabin operation for 3 weeks in Spring as previously planned?

Can work be combined so all done at same time?
Mr. Robertson answered that the projects are separate and that the continuation of the Tram Platform Repair project is weather dependent - cannot be done in cold weather.

Mr. Robertson added that the Tram Platform repairs are still scheduled for Spring and will require a single cabin operating for 3 weeks.

Sponsored Post - She Kills Monsters Teen Drama Presented By Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance February 9 -11 - A Comedic Romp Into World Of Fantasy Role Playing Games

The Roosevelt Island Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance Teen Drama She Kills Monsters will be presented this coming weekend, February 9 - 11.

According to MST &DA:
A comedic romp into the world of fantasy role-playing games, in a new edition created specially for High School performing groups! She Kills Monsters tells the story of Agnes Evans as she leaves her childhood home in Ohio following the death of her teenage sister, Tilly. When Agnes finds Tilly's Dungeons & Dragons notebook, however, she stumbles into a journey of discovery and action-packed adventure in the imaginary world that was Tilly's refuge. In this high-octane dramatic comedy laden with homicidal fairies, nasty ogres, and 90s pop culture, acclaimed young playwright Qui Nguyen offers a heart-pounding homage to the geek and warrior within us all.

Recommended for ages 13+ at parent discretion (PG-13).
Performances are:
  • Friday Feb. 9,     7pm
  • Saturday Feb. 10,  2pm
  • Saturday Feb. 10,  7pm
  • Sunday Feb. 11,    7:30 pm
At the Howe Theatre in the Roosevelt Island Cultural Center 548 Main Street. 

Tickets are:
  • General Admission $20
  • Seniors/Students $15 ​
Click here for more info and to buy tickets for the MST&DA Teen Drama performance of She Kills Monsters.

Click here for more information on MST&DA Theatre, Dance, Fitness classes for all ages - 18 months to adults.

Here's how you get to MST&DA at 548 Main Street.

UPDATE -2/9 Roosevelt Island photographer Irina Hage shares these photos taken from She Kills Monsters rehearsal and reports:

I was out last night to the rehearsal of the Teen Theater.

The show is great.

I enjoyed it very much.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

16 Year Old Roosevelt Island Girl Shoved To Ground On Main Street Saturday Afternoon By Emotionally Disturbed Homeless Man - PSD Places Man In Custody And NYPD Transports To Hospital

A Tipster reported last Monday:

So sometime Saturday afternoon, a young 16 year old girl was attacked on Main Street by a disturbed most likely homeless man. The young girl was accosted and thrown to the ground right in front of Nisi restaurant about 3 or 4 in the afternoon.
I asked Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department (PSD) Chief Jack McManus and Public Information Officer Alonza Robertson what happened.

According to this summary of the PSD Incident Report:
While walking past 605 Main Street at at about 4:30 PM Saturday February 3, a Roosevelt Island 16 year old girl was threatened by a homeless man and shoved in the chest causing her to fall to the ground.

She went to the Public Safety Department to report the incident.

While speaking with the girl, PSD officers observed the man walking south on Main Street near Nisi and approached him at which point the man became irate, spit at the PSD officers and refused to obey verbal commands to stop.

The PSD Officers attempted to place the man in custody. The man resisted flailing his arms and refused to be handcuffed.

After continuing to resist, the officers used spray on the man who was then handcuffed and taken to PSD holding cell.

NYPD 114 precinct officers and an Emergency Medical Service team arrived. The man became irate again and spit at the NYPD officers.

The man was evaluated as being Emotionally Disturbed and transported to Cornell Hospital by NYPD.

At the time of transport, the victim did not report any physical injuries.

Later, the victim's parent reported to PSD that the girl had sustained bruising and substantial pain to her lower back as a result of being shoved to the ground.
Here's the man

being taken into custody by PSD.

The Public Safety Daily Report (published on sidebar) listed the incident as follows:
02/03/18 – 1634 – 549 Main St – Aided – PSSD/NYPD/EMS responded – Aided was transported to the hospital.

Roosevelt Island Residents Association Monthly Meeting Tonight February 7, Youth Time Capsule Project & Support Of Barrier Free Living At Coler Hospital Among Items On Agenda - RIRA Public Session To Raise Your Issues And Ask Questions Too

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Common Council will hold it's monthly meeting this evening, February 7 at 8:00 PM in the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street).

As always, prior to the start of each monthly meeting there is a Public Session in which residents can come and address the Common Council Delegates on any issue of concern.

According to the RIRA Agenda:
If at all possible, please arrive 15 mins early to help set up tables and chairs

Date: Wednesday, February 7, 2018

Time & Place: 8:00 pm, Church of Good Shepard, Basement

1. Public Session (please sign-in to be placed on the Public Session Speaking List)

2. Call to Seat Jim Livornese, as a representative for Southtown Delegation.

3. Call to Seat Chrispophe Abril, as a representative for Octagon Delegation.

4. Roll Call of Common Council Members

5. Adoption of Agenda

6. President's Call to Fill Vacant Committee Chairs:
      a. Children Youth & Education Ad Hoc Committee (co- chair)
      b. Cornell Integration Ad Hoc Task Force

7. Committee Reports & Business
       a. Island Services Committee Report (Oral)
       b. Children Youth & Education Ad Hoc Committee Report
       c. Social, Cultural & Education Committee Report
       d. Public Safety Committee Report
               i. Resolution in Support of Barrier Free Living. Movant: Erin-Feely Nahem, Public Safey Committee Chair.

8. Old Business

According to Barrier Free Living web site:
We work with people with disabilities — both survivors of domestic violence and homeless men, women and children — to thrive in safe, supportive communities.
More info here.

More info on the Youth Time Capsule project here.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

Roosevelt Island Doctors Report On Current Flu Epidemic - A True Influenza Outbreak This Year Says Doctor Kathy Grimm, Still Time To Get Your Flu Shot

WCBS Channel 2 news reports that 2 NYC children have died of the flu epidemic this season.

I asked the Roosevelt Island medical community today:

Have you seen any greater # of Flu Patients or more severe symptons this year among Roosevelt Island adults and children?
Roosevelt Island Urgent Care's Steven Simanowitz replied:
At Roosevelt Island Urgent Care we have seen an increase in flu cases this year from previous years. This flu season has been one of the worst in recent memory. There is currently a national epidemic and we are here to help everyone fight it. It is not too late to get the flu shot and we have them in stock. We also recommend that if anyone starts feeling any symptoms of the flu they come in right away to be seen by a doctor, catching it early can help fight it.

So far we have been able to keep our patients from going to the hospital but we do monitor each patient and evey patient receives a follow up call within 1-2 days of their visit to see how they are doing and if there is anything else we can do for them.
Roosevelt Island pediatrician Doctor Kathy Grimm replied:
There is a true influenza outbreak this year. Both the Urgent Care and our practice have seen quite of number of affected patients.

Some patients have appeared more ill than others. Some had the flu vaccine this season and others not. Thus far the illness has been self limited and I hope it stays that way. There is always a risk of secondary bacterial infections such as pneumonia.

It is critical that any one with the flu take care of themselves, and the very young, elderly and those with chronic lung or cardiac diseases should be treated with Tamiflu within 48 hours of onset of symptoms, which is usually fever.

The Center For Disease Control website is a good source of information.
Roosevelt Island's Doctor Jack Resnick reports not seeing many flu cases among his patients so far but reports he currently has the flu.

Roosevelt Island Urgent Care, Doctor Grimm and Doctor Resnick are all located at 520 Main Street.

According to the NYC Office of Emergency Management:
It’s not too late to get your flu shot. That’s the message Dr. Demetre Daskalakis – Deputy Commissioner for the Division of Disease Control at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene – has for New Yorkers. Dr. Daskalakis is the feature guest on the latest episode of “Prep Talk”, the NYC Emergency Management Department’s podcast series. Listen as Dr. Daskalakis discusses the efficacy of the flu vaccine and debunks some of the myths about this season’s flu virus. Find out who’s most at risk to contract the flu, whether or not you can get sick from taking the flu shot, and learn some of the best methods of preventing the virus. For more information about where to get vaccinated, call 311, visit to access the Flu Vaccine Locator, or text “flu” to 877877.

Be well but if you are feeling flu like symptoms, go see a Doctor right away.

UPDATE 2/15:

Giant RI Monument Mock Up Displayed For Comments At Tram Station Plaza Last Saturday - What Do You Think?

Riverwalk Developer and Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder Hudson Related's proposed Giant RI Monument sign mock up was back for a second display at the Tram Plaza Station last Saturday afternoon for viewing by Roosevelt Island residents and tourists.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Information Officer Alonza Robertson  explains that RIOC was seeking comments from passerbys on the RI Giant Monument and you can still give your opinion online.

The weather was very cold so most people I observed walked past the Giant RI monument without stopping. Some noticed it and took pictures. Based on my very small sample over a little more than an hour, tourists liked the Giant RI monument and residents were split. Two residents liked it and 4 did not. The Giant RI Monument mock up was displayed for about 4 hours.

A visitor from the Netherlands told me she loved the Giant RI monument and said tourists would certainly want to take pictures of it and selfies. As we continued talking, she said if she was a resident of Roosevelt Island, she would hate it adding that there is a similar type monument in Amsterdam that tourists love but residents hate.

Roosevelt Island Historical Society President Judy Berdy has made her opposition to the Giant RI Monument well known. Her reasons are:
  • The structure interferes with the panoramic view of the tram, the lawn, the landmark quality Visitor Center Kiosk and the city beyond.
  • The structure serves no purpose other that to have 10 feet tall letters.
  • The structure is a tempting object for kids to climb on.
  • Roosevelt Island is a community not an amusement park attraction.
  • People are already on Roosevelt Island: RIHS sees no reason to shout; people know they are here.
Ms Berdy spoke to me on Saturday too

As previously reported, a Hudson Related spokesperson said:
We believe the Tram is the ideal and only real option for the RI monument.

In order to truly say “Welcome to Roosevelt Island” to the many visitors coming daily, we want the monument to be in a heavily trafficked and highly visible area that serves as a great photo opp spot.

We think it will provide a fun landmark that says Roosevelt Island is a destination worth visiting (and not just turning around to take a return trip on the tram). Ultimately the decision will be made by the Board.
A Roosevelt Island resident who likes the Giant RI Monument tweets:
Roosevelt Island resident Janet Falk does not like the Giant RI Monument:
This is what I wrote on the comment card:

Unnecessary. Blocks the view of the kiosk and the river. Someone has a 10-foot ego.

To which I now add:

RIOC insufficiently promotes our Island as a tourist destination. When visitors arrived in the recent past, they had no way of knowing there are eight restaurants, an art gallery and spectacular views of the Manhattan skyline. No wonder they immediately re-boarded the tram.

RIOC has yet to print rack cards (a standard promotional item) and distribute them to the tourist information carts parked in heavily trafficked locations, in addition to the new and inaccurate brochure supplied to the NYC Visitor Center on Seventh Avenue. Erica Spencer-EL said the brochures are now available at the tram stations. Brochures at the tram station are a positive step, but by then it is almost too late. RIOC has to connect with visitors BEFORE they get on the tram to spark an interest in taking the tram in the first place.

If you build an RI sign, visitors won't come unless you promote it. I anticipate that tourists may stumble upon the RI sign when they arrive, take a photo and get back on the tram, as in the past, without spending a dime here.

People may talk about the Robert Indiana LOVE sculpture on Sixth Avenue and West 55. How many have seen the HOPE sculpture by the same artist at SeventhAvenue and West 53, only a few blocks away?

All in all, I do not see the sign as a positive for the Island. The money invested in this project would be better spent on promotion of the Island as a tourist destination, and then on signage when people arrive here.
The RIOC Real Estate Advisory Committee will make final decision on whether Giant RI Monument is installed at Tram Plaza station or not.

More on the Giant RI Monument at these prior posts.

Monday, February 5, 2018

Trump Accuses Dems Of Being Un-American And Treasonous For Not Clapping During SOTU - Fallon Morphs Dylan's Times They Are A Changin For Current Times

Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse.

There is a resistance.
UPDATE 8:15:

You're Invited To Upcoming Events At Roosevelt Island Senior Center Carter Burden Network - Feb 7 Art Salon Exhibition, Feb 8 Annual General Meeting & Submit Challenge To Cornell Tech 3D Printer Maker Lab By Feb 18

The Roosevelt Island Senior Center Carter Burden Network program (546 Main Street) is hosting:

Art Salon Exhibition paintings by Lisa Enem opening reception February 7th from 3:00- 5:00 pm. Refreshments will be served.
February 8 Annual General Meeting from (3:00pm- 4:30pm).

The MakerLAB at Cornell Tech needs your help. Please submit all challenge to Jane Swanson at or 646-220-1505.

Contact the Roosevelt Island Senior Center Carter Burden Network for more info or click here for monthly calendar.

RIOC Initiates New Motorgate Merchant Validation Program To Help Roosevelt Island Businesses Attract New Visitors With Cars - Nisi Restaurant Owner Pleased With Idea

 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Information Officer Alonza Robertson reports:
It’s about to get a little easier for Roosevelt Island visitors with cars to patronage Main Street’s shops, restaurants, delis and theatre.

Beginning February 7, island businesses will be invited to participate in a pilot Motorgate merchant validation program. For $150 a night, businesses can purchase parking coupons for up to 30 customer cars that spend money at their establishments. The validation allows customers up to five hours of no-charge parking. Those businesses who’d like to offer validation every weekday and weekends for a month, will pay $500.

“Our goal is to help our businesses attract more customers,” said Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation President Susan Rosenthal. “Offering free parking for patrons, who usually pay more than $20 for the same time, is a good idea.”

For business patrons, the program will work just like most other traditional parking validation programs.

Step 1) Park at the Motorgate garage.

Step 2) Take the parking ticket from the dispenser and keep it with you.

Step 3) Validate your ticket at the participating business – Participating retailers will issue you one validation coupon to be used in conjunction with your parking entry ticket.

For more details on how to enroll, contact Cyril Opperman, RIOC’s director of transportation at 212.832.1401 or via email at
Roosevelt Island Nisi restaurant 

 Nisi Owners Kaie & Alex Razaghi

owner Alex Razaghi is pleased with RIOC's Motorgate Merchant Validation Program. Nisi has an upcoming Baby shower party booked that includes visitors from off Island. Mr Razaghi says that offering no charge parking at the Motorgate Garage is a tremendous benefit to off Island customers and will greatly help his business.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

From The Comfort Of Your Warm Home, Take A Winter's Evening Ride On The East River Astoria Ferry Route - East 34, LIC, Roosevelt Island & Astoria

Click on full screen icon for a fantastic view.