Friday, September 13, 2019

Get Rid Of Your Sensitive Paper And Empty Your Files At Roosevelt Island End Of Summer Shred-A-Thon Saturday September 14 - Sponsored By Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, State Senator Serrano And Council Member Ben Kallos

Roosevelt Island resident and iDig2Learn Founder Christina Delfico reports:

FREE End of Summer Roosevelt Island Shred-a-thon! 10 am - 1pm SAT 9/14

It's like a Fall Cleanse for your apartment! Shred those Sensitive Papers for FREE!
Raid the closets, empty the files now because in less than two weeks the Shred Truck is back! 10am to 1pm - Motorgate Turnaround near Gristedes, 688 Main Street.

Start saving those sensitive papers for shredding now! Islanders asked and Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, Senator Serrano and City Council Member Kallos listened, and are sponsoring another Shred Truck date on September 14th to show their Earth Love and help Roosevelt Island stay clean and green. This is the best way to properly dispose of sensitive papers, you can even watch as it happens. Generous support from the Upper Green Side helps make this possible.

You can also bring your used batteries and your clean plastic bags, which don't go in the recycle bin, for proper disposal!

See you at the Shred.

Does It Say NO U TURN or TURN U NO - New Roosevelt Island Main Street Traffic Markings Confusing To Some Local Drivers

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) recently announced the long needed re-striping of Main Street. According to RIOC:

Re-striping Main Street Completed

On September 4, 2019, Main Street not only received new traffic striping, but also new STOP signs stenciled on the asphalt. These improvements will not only make our roadways safer for pedestrians, but also for drivers. Everyone, including bicyclists, are expected to follow all traffic signs and commands from Public Safety Department (PSD) personnel.
RIOC also stenciled signage to indicate that No U Turns are allowed.

But as one Roosevelt Island Driver shows us with this picture, is the No U Turn street marking clear?


Am I the only one that sees a problem with this?
Here are a couple of other views of NO U Turn or Turn U NO Roosevelt Island Main Street markings?

What do you see - NO U TURN or TURN U NO?

Good News, Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan This Weekend, Tram & Ferry Service Too

After the last 4 weekends with no Roosevelt Island F train service to Manhattan, this upcoming weekend Roosevelt Island residents

will have F Train service to and from Manhattan.

Both Roosevelt Island Tram cabins are operating and here's the NYC Ferry Roosevelt Island Astoria Route Schedule. 

During June 13 Roosevelt Island Town Hall Meeting organized by Council Member Ben Kallos, MTA representative Markus Book spoke about Roosevelt Island F Train subway service. Watch the full MTA Roosevelt Island presentation below. 

Thursday, September 12, 2019

More Than Reading Writing And Math - Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 Students Learn Computational Thinking And Computer Science With Help Of Cornell Tech NYC K-12 Initiative Says School Principal Mandana Beckman

It's the first full week of school at Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217.

Principal Mandana Beckman describes computational thinking being taught at PS/IS 217 with the help of the Cornell Tech K-12 Initiative. According to Ms. Beckman:

When I think about the work that we have to do here at school, there's so much that we're doing to prepare kids for the future and that the world they live in today is about computational thinking, it is about computer science and we want to make sure that we're preparing them for that just as we prepare them to read, to write, to do math...

We really want the best for every single student here at PS/IS 217, so when they pick their career path they can think back to their experiences in elementary and middle school and how it had an influence on who they are in the future. It's been a great experience working with Cornell Tech and we're excited about what we're going to be doing tomorrow.

And here's more on the Cornell Tech NYC K-12 computer teaching initiative.

Here's more info on the Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 school ratings

and the Cornell Tech NYC K-12 School initiative.

RIOC Names Former NYPD Detective Anthony Amoroso As New Deputy Chief Of Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department - PSD Will Continue Community Policing Policies Established Under Retired Chief McManus Says RIOC

As reported last June, Jack McManus retired as Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department Chief on July 1, 2019 and Deputy Chief Kevin Brown took over as Acting Chief.

 Chief McManus and Deputy Chief Brown At June 25 PSC Meeting Image From Frank Farance

Today, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) announced:
On Monday, September 9, 2019, Anthony Amoroso became the new Deputy Director of the Public Safety Department (PSD). He fills the former role once held by current PSD Acting Chief Kevin Brown. Director Amoroso is a resident of Monroe, New York, but grew up in Massapequa on Long Island. At the age of 20, he joined the New York Police Department (NYPD) where he worked for over 28 years. Director Amoroso achieved the rank of Detective First Grade. Mr. Amoroso comes to RIOC with an extensive training background Anthony was a senior detective investigator and instructor assigned to train all members of NYPD Detective Bureau.

During his tenure at the NYPD, Director Amoroso was:
  • Instructor Development Programs, designed to exchange and relay leading-edge ideas in the field
  • Developed and collaborated on innovative courses and lessons of various tactical operations for current and newly assigned Detectives, Supervisors and Undercover Officers.
Some of the certifications in training that Mr. Amoroso holds include:
  • Certified General Topics Instructor, State of New York Division of Criminal Justice Services
  • Certified Defensive Tactics Instructor, State of New York Division of Criminal Justice Services
  • Certified Firearms Instructor, State of New York Division of Criminal Justice Services.
  • In addition to training Mr. Amoroso was a patrol officer in the housing developments of NYC and he was a detective investigator in NYPD narcotics division.
I asked RIOC President Susan Rosenthal:
PSD Deputy Director Amoroso has an impressive background with NYPD.

Not mentioned in the announcement is if he has extensive experience with community policing which was prioritized with great success for the Roosevelt Island community by former Chief Jack McManus?

Kevin has said that community policing was a priority that would continue under his leadership.

Any additional info on community policing background?

Also, any info or timeline about the naming of a permanent Chief of PSD?
A RIOC spokesperson replied:
Deputy Director Amoroso is as committed to community policing as Acting Chief Brown and as Chief McManus was before him. It is a program that is obviously working on Roosevelt Island and we see no reason to change a winning formula now. We hope to be making an announcement about a permanent chief sometime in October.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Roosevelt Island Remembers 9/11/ NYC World Trade Center Towers Attack, 18 Years Ago Today

On the evening of September 10, 2001 the lower Manhattan skyline and World Trade Center Towers could be seen looking like this before it was forever changed.

Hard to believe that it's been 18 years since the September 11, 2001 terror attacks on the World Trade Center Towers, Pentagon, and the downing of Flight 93 in Shanksville Pennsylvania.

Earlier today, ceremonies were held to remember those who were killed.

Here's what the World Trade Center attacks looked like from Roosevelt Island on September 11, 2001.

Main Street Wire Image of 9/11 Smoke Burning From World Trade Center by Vicki Feinmel/Linda Heimer

Below is the Roosevelt Island 9/11 Remembrance Garden

and the plaque in the Remembrance Garden that honors Roosevelt Islanders who died in the terrorist attack:
Ed Beyea,
Anthony J. Fallone,
Taimour Khan,
Scott Larsen,
Kevin J. Smith and the firefighters who were based on Roosevelt Island
Deputy Chief Ray Downey,
Deputy Chief Charlie Kasper,
Battalion Chief John Moran, and
Battalion Chief John Paolillo.

Roosevelt Island also remembers former Public Safety Department Chief Jack McManus who is currently battling a 9/11 related illness.

Here's today's 9/11 Remembrance Ceremony at the World Trade Center.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Roosevelt Island Historical Society Lecture On Barren Island By Author Carol Zoreff Thursday September 12 At RI NYPL Branch - Learn Fascinating Story Of Family Living On Jamaica Bay Factory Island Long Ago Where Dead Horses Turned Into Glue

You're invited to join the Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) at the Roosevelt Island Public Library For Barren Island Book Lecture with author Carol Zoref.

According to the RIHS

AUTHOR CAROL ZOREF WILL DISCUSS HER NEW BOOK "BARREN ISLAND", the story of a family living in the factory island on Jamaica Bay. This is where the city's dead horses and other large animals were rendered into glue and fertilizer from the mid 19th century until the 1930's.

The Program will be at the Roosevelt Island Branch, NYPL, 524 Main Street, Thursday, September 12th at 6:30 p.m.

This program is sponsored by the RIHS in coordination with the NY Public Library.

All programs are free and open to the public!!!!!
Here's more on Barren Island and adjacent Dead Horse Bay.

Mark your calendar for the next round of public lecture events hosted by the RIHS on: February 13th, January 9th, December 12th, and November 14th. Stay tuned for more information about each program

NY State Senator Jose Serrano Announces $50 Thousand Grant To Support NYPL Branch Programming In 29th Senate District Including Roosevelt Island

Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano announce today that the Roosevelt Island NY Public Library branch received a portion of a $50 Thousand grant to libraries in the 29 Senate District

Senator Joins NYPL Managers to Announce $50,000 in Library Operating Aid
According to press release from Senator Serrano's office:
Senator José M. Serrano today announced $50,000 in funding for libraries in the 29th Senate District. The funding was secured during this year’s state budget and will support library programming in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Roosevelt Island. Senator Serrano made the announcement alongside Managers from the New York Public Library (NYPL) at the Aguilar Branch in East Harlem.

"Libraries are critical to the wellbeing of our neighborhoods and provide New Yorkers with lifelong opportunities for learning and growing,” said Senator Serrano. “More than a place for books, libraries are often cornerstones of our communities and play a critical role in fostering reading skills, assisting in job-searching and professional development, helping English language learners, and closing the digital divide for those who don’t have access to a computer. The New York Public Library branches in my district have done a wonderful job of providing much-needed services and programming for children and adults, and I am proud to support them with this programmatic funding.”

"The New York Public Library is grateful to Senator Serrano for his generous support of his neighborhood branches," said Anthony Marx, President of The New York Public Library. "New York City's libraries are valued and trusted spaces that provide vital resources and services to all New Yorkers and on behalf of our patrons we thank him for this wonderful recognition."

The recipients of the funding in the Bronx are the NYPL High Bridge Branch, Mott Haven Branch, and Sedgwick Branch. In Manhattan, recipients include the NYPL 96th Street Branch, Aguilar Branch, and St. Agnes Branch, as well as the Roosevelt Island Branch.

Branch Managers at the presentation included Ashley Gonzalez from Aguilar Library, Deborah Allman from High Bridge Library, Jeanine Thomas from Mott Haven Library, Carlos Chavez from the Roosevelt Island Library, Samuel Ansah from Sedgwick Library, and Jennifer Ann Zarr from St. Agnes Library.
Senator Serrano spoke at last night's Four Freedom Democratic Club meeting on Roosevelt Island.

Monday, September 9, 2019

Starting Tomorrow, September 10, No Roosevelt Island Street Parking Without Credit Cards, Meters No Longer Accepting Cash Payment - Credit Cards Only, Debit Cards Not Accepted Either Says RIOC

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) announced today that Roosevelt Island parking meters will not accept cash but only accept credit cards. At this time, debit cards will not be accepted.

According to RIOC:
On Tuesday, September 10, 2019, all parking meters on Roosevelt Island streets will be converted to a cashless system. This means parking meters will no longer be able to accept bills or coins. Only credit cards will be accepted. This transition is part of RIOC’s ongoing commitment to embrace technology that cuts costs and improves efficiency of operations. Going to a cashless system will eliminate the need to regularly remove, transport and count currency from the machines. An overwhelming majority of customers – more than eighty percent (80%) - already use credit or debit cards to pay for street parking, so we expect this to be a seamless transition.

If you have any questions, please contact us at 212-832-4540 or visit our Occupant Help Center at
Roosevelt Island Historical Society President Judy Berdy shares this message she sent to RIOC in repsonse:
I think it is a drastic move to give residents one days notice for a change in the fee collection policy. Seven days notice with public signs posted a week before would be reasonable notification.

RIOC staff seems to think that we who live here have to jump at your commands instantaneously.

I hope to see a revised notification today with plenty of notice given on the no cash policy.

A Roosevelt Island car owner told me that the Southtown Parking meters have not been accepting cash for several weeks.

By the meters not accepting cash or debit cards,  Roosevelt Island residents without credit cards will not be able to park their car on the street.

More on Roosevelt Island parking at prior post.

UPDATE 2:45 - Roosevelt Island residents ask:
What about people who have high APRs on their credit cards?

How long will it be until they accept debit cards?

Or maybe an app that we can load money up on our phones.
Will they accept the use of the ParkNYC app like rest of the city?
What about people without credit cards or bank accounts? Are they just not allowed to park?
And yes, there are people, who for their own reasons, prefer not to pay for things electronically or via card.
UPDATE 9/10 - RIOC heard the community and adds debit cards to the parking meters. According to RIOC today:
Beginning Tuesday, September 10, 2019, all parking meters on Roosevelt Island streets will begin to be converted to a cashless system. This means parking meters will no longer be able to accept bills or coins. Only credit AND debit cards will be accepted. Our parking machine vendor was able to add debit cards at the urging of our residents and RIOC. We are also exploring the possibility of paying by a mobile phone app in the near future.

This transition is part of RIOC’s ongoing commitment to embrace technology that cuts costs and improves efficiency of operations. Going to a cashless system will eliminate the need to regularly remove, transport and count currency from the machines. An overwhelming majority of customers – more than eighty percent (80%) - already use credit or debit cards to pay for street parking, so we expect this to be a seamless transition. Unlike many other authorities in New York State, RIOC does not receive funding from Albany and must operate as efficiently as possible.

If you have any questions, please contact us at 212-832-4540 or visit our Occupant Help Center at

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Hundreds Of Motorcycles, Ambulances & FDNY Emergency Vehicles Crossing Queensboro Bridge This Afternoon Frighten Roosevelt Island Residents With Thoughts Of The Worst, What Was Going On - It Was Run For Richie 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride

Roosevelt Island residents were startled and feared the worst this September Sunday prior to the 18th year anniversary of 9/11 World Trade Center attacks by what appeared to be hundreds of motorcycles, ambulances and Fire Department emergency vehicles with non stop blasting of sirens crossing the Queensboro Bridge. A Roosevelt Island resident texted:

Bridge full of ambulances - know what's going on?
And from theTwitterverse

I asked the NYPD 19th precinct:

The NYPD 19th precinct replied:

The NYC Emergency Management Department tweeted notice of the event yesterday:

Here's more on the Run for Richie 9/11 Memorial Motorcycle Ride

You're Invited To Four Freedoms Democratic Club Meeting Monday September 9 At Roosevelt Island's Good Shepherd Community Center - Discuss Local Issues, Democratic Party Politics & Meet NY State Senator Jose Serrano

Are you interested in Democratic Party politics, meeting Roosevelt Island's NY State Senator Jose Serrano or learning how to get involved with community issues?

 State Senator Serrano/4 Freedoms Dems C

If yes, you're invited to stop by Roosevelt Island's Good Shepherd Community Center for some political talk and meet some interesting folks from the Four Freedoms Democratic Club.
Join Us for Our Annual Roosevelt Island Meeting
Monday, September 9, 7 to 9 pm

Our Club serves the 76th Assembly District, which includes Roosevelt Island, and every year we hold a meeting in Roosevelt Island to provide easy access to a meeting for our members and neighbors in this neighborhood. State Senator Jose Serrano's Senate district also includes Roosevelt Island and, as he has done in the past, he will join us at this meeting to discuss his plans and hear our concerns for the year ahead.

This meeting takes place in the basement of the Church of the Good Shepherd, located at 543 Main Street on Roosevelt Island, just a short walk from the tram and subway stops.

Senator Serrano addresses the FFDC at our 2018 Roosevelt Island Meeting

Also save the date for October 21st meeting when we return to our regular meeting place -- Draesel Hall, which is next to the Church of the Holy Trinity at 316 East 88th Street. Councilwoman Carlina Rivera will join us for our October meeting.

Our remaining 2019 monthly meetings:

Monday, November 18

Monday, December 9

These meetings will also take place at Draesel Hall, which is next to the Church of the Holy Trinity at 316 East 88th Street.
Here's more info on Four Freedoms Democratic Club.