Saturday, February 19, 2022

Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Providing Free Covid 19 PCR Testing At Roosevelt Island Carter Burden Senior Center February 21 To 26 - First Come, First Served

The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) will be offering free Covid 19 PCR Tests at the Roosevelt Island Carter Burden Senior Center (546 Main Street) starting Monday, February 21 thru Saturday February 26 from 10 AM  5 PM weekdays and 10 AM - 2 PM Saturday. 

RIRA President Rossana Ceruzzi reports that RIRA has obtained 6 thousand Covid 19 PCR tests and is looking for storefront space to continue testing in March.

According to NYC Health Department, the most recent 7 Day Covid Testing Data from February 9 - 15 for Roosevelt Island (Zip Code 10044 ) shows 461 people tested and 8 new Positive Cases for a rate of 1.74%. 

Click here for December 2021/January 2022 Roosevelt Island 10044 Zip Code Covid 19 statistics when positivity rate was as high as 30%

Friday, February 18, 2022

Sponsored Post - Adib Mansour And Marlene Steiner Your Local Real Estate Specialists At Compass - Our Mission Is To Help Everyone Find Their Place In This World

 Knowledge of a local agent. Power of a national network.

Here's how I leverage the COMPASS network and solutions to help you:  

1- Find your place in the world —no matter where you want to go. COMPASS is a coast-to-coast referral network that now covers 45% of the country's population. Anywhere you want to go—I can connect you to 22,000+ hardworking COMPASS professionals to find your dream home.  

2- Seamlessly achieve your real estate goals. As a COMPASS agent, I have access to the best digital platform to make your buying or selling journey simple and stress-free. I'll formulate the best strategy and guide you through every step of the transaction for a successful real estate experience.  

3- Get a higher price for your home with increased listing exposure. About 95% of all real estate searches start online—so you need an elevated digital reach to find buyers. I'll drive more traffic to your property listing online as we build upon the growing COMPASS brand awareness.  

4- Increase your home’s value with COMPASS Concierge.

COMPASS Concierge is the hassle-free way to sell your home faster and for a higher price: From painting to flooring and everything in between, Concierge transforms your home with zero upfront costs and no interest - ever. Exclusive to COMPASS, our Concierge program is among a suite of services designed to prepare your home for the market. Whether it’s roofing repairs, moving and storage costs, or additional needs, we will work with you to assess every opportunity to elevate your home’s value and improve your selling experience. With Concierge, you don't have to pay the initial out-of-pocket costs for home improvement services. When your home sells, simply pay back the funds that the program provided and nothing more. 


5- COMPASS' unique tools to help you seamlessly sell your home. To help Sellers hit the ground running, COMPASS has created a series of tools we'll use together. We’ll monitor Comparable Listings and notify you when new ones come on the market in your area. We will evaluate pricing trends, days on market, and more. In addition, COMPASS offers Bridge Loan Services to seamlessly move you to your next home.  

6- COMPASS’ advanced technology to buy your dream home. How do you know if a home is worth your time to visit? With personalized advice and recommendations from Marlene and I, merging market knowledge with your specific needs, here’s how we help buyers save time for a better search experience: Real-time market insights for better decisions: My COMPASS tool, Comparable Market Analysis (CMA), provides live market data to help you understand prices of similar homes within the area so that you can feel confident about the purchase price and value.Collaborative tools to streamline the search for your dream home: COMPASS Collections is a visual workspace for us to organize and discuss the homes you want to see. We'll maximize your time and energy and minimize the runaround with efficient communication in a single platform.  

7- COMPASS’ revolutionary one-stop-shop to rent the best valued home. COMPASS is revolutionizing the real estate industry as a digital one-stop shop. The app also allows us to create market reports based on our client’s wish lists, and share with you. 

“Wall Street doesn’t have to wait for once a quarter updates of the Dow Jones Index, and the real estate community shouldn’t have to wait that long for housing information either. 'Compass Markets' will provide a moving picture of the market so that consumers and their agents can work together to make better, more informed decisions on their real estate journeys,” said Robert Reffkin, Compass Founder & CEO, in a statement. 

8- Your personal COMPASS real estate agents. In real estate, relationships are everything. So forgo the impersonal instant buyers, and opt for the Marlene Steiner group with 30+ years of Real Estate Experience, and deep community ties with 100% passion for Roosevelt Island and New York City. Our local knowledge and connections means your home is priced right and gets maximum exposure. 

Adib Mansour and Marlene Steiner are here to answer all your Real Estate questions, and help you get the best value for your home, and the best tools to find your ideal home, whether you are buying or renting.  

Current Listings.
Double Open House Sunday February 20, 12:30 pm - 2 pm.
Open House and all viewings by appointment only: (646)283--4973 or Adib.Mansour@COMPASS.COM


Adib Mansour Real Estate Sales Agent The Marlene Steiner Group 110 5th Avenue, 3rd Floor, New York, NY 10011 m: 646.283.4973 

Adib Mansour social media links are at: Instagram: @WeKnowRooseveltIsland and Facebook

Marlene Steiner social media links are at: Instragram and Facebook

Homeless Encampment At The Roosevelt Island Subway Station - Residents Ask What Can Be Done?

A Roosevelt Island resident reported this morning:

What is the appropriate action to take for people who are living in the Roosevelt Island Subway station? There were people camped out on both platforms. I was surprised to see an entire set up with a mattress at the platform today. They were sleeping and didn’t bother anyone. However we had a very erratic person screaming and shouting on the platform frightening all the school children this morning. There was no public safety in sight. How do we get more regular monitoring at our station?

Read some of the comments to Roosevelt Islander Instagram post for more thoughts on Roosevelt Island homeless issue. 

  • I counted no less than ten TEN!!! this morning. The subway has sadly become a mobile homeless shelter. Besides the fact that these individuals are taking up space in the cars during prime rush hours (yes they are full during certain hours) there is the public health aspect. One individual was laid out on bench soaked in urine. Unhealthy. The Mayor announced a lot of plans but we see no execution.
  • Unlike the NYC shelter system, people find this relatively clean and safe. It’s really sad when this is your best option in a city with a budget surplus of almost one billion dollars. NYC desperately needs much more supportive, low-income housing.
  • this is not a MTA or NYPD issue. This is a Humanitarian issue not being addressed. These are human beings displaced by the rising cost of living in NYC. We need real solutions that don’t stigmatize the homeless.  

The issue of homeless people in and around the Roosevelt Island subway station was discussed during the February 15 Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Public Safety Committee meeting with Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department Chief Kevin Brown. According to Chief Brown:

 ... there were a few homeless in the subway system. We got a few complaints of some of the homeless harassing residents in the subway system which we are working with NYPD and they have promised they're going to step up their patrols in in the subway.  We have received a number of complaints and we are actively addressing it. We have our patrols. We don't patrol inside the station. That's the MTA and NYPD, but outside the station we do patrol outside of the station ... 

RIOC PSD Deputy Chief Anthony Amoroso said:

... I was speaking to a couple of the transit officers down in the subway within the last week about the homeless sleeping down there. They are one thousand percent about allowing them to keep warm type of shelter and as long as they're not harassing anybody down there they're all for really trying to accommodate them to the best of their ability and not throw them into the cold.

Most of them do not want homeless services. They don't want to go to the hospital. You want to be very compassionate.  If they're not committing any crimes,  allowing them to keep warm and allowing them to to have bathroom facilities. It's something that they're all for.  I did have a conversation with a couple of the transit officers down there and if they're not committing any crimes they really do not want to push them away and put them in a worse condition...

 Here's the RIRA Public Safety Committee meeting discussion of the Roosevelt Island homeless issue.


A Roosevelt Island parent shares these concerns:

It has been relayed to me that the Roosevelt Island Subway Station does not have enough cameras for PSD/NYPD to monitor what is going on. Beyond the homeless situation this is extremely concerning given the number of threats that MTA gets. I think we as a community need to demand this is fixed asap because if anything does happen on the platform we need to know there will be a record of it.

People living in the Roosevelt Island Station: As you reported on your Instagram we have people who have taken up living in the station. Although I personally have not seen them do anything harmful I think it causes 2 issues:

a. It encourages more people to come to this station which could lead to a larger issue. As another parent reported her children have been subjected to seeing them urinate on the tracks in the morning on the way to school. 

b. There are so many random bags and belongings lying around that it is hard to tell if something is a random item that has been left at the station that we should report or not. As someone who is accutely aware of subway threats this stuff lying around is triggering. 

The person who was acting extremely erratic this morning at 7am was apparently taken away by PSD around 7:30am but by the time i got back to the island around 8am they were back at the station shouting at people. This is a larger issue with the law and there being no consequence for disorderly behavior. I'm not sure what we do here but I have tried doing what I can as a private citizen to report and I hope you article provides encouragement for more people to report this in real time. Also if your article could clarify the steps people should take (call PSD, call 311, etc) that might be helpful since figuring out the steps to take is not easy or clear. 

According to the NYC Mayor's Office today:

New York City Mayor Eric Adams today released the Subway Safety Plan, which lays out how his administration will begin addressing public safety concerns and supporting people experiencing homelessness and serious mental illness on New York City’s subways. The plan includes comprehensive investments in short- and medium-term solutions, including expanded outreach teams with New York Police Department (NYPD) officers and clinicians, additional housing and mental health resources, and outlines long-term systems improvements through changes to state and federal laws to connect more New Yorkers to the care they need. A key component of the plan will also direct NYPD personnel to assist in enforcing certain subway rules, such as sleeping across multiple seats, exhibiting aggressive behavior to passengers, or creating an unsanitary environment....


The NYC Department of Homeless Services adds:

... What should I do if I see an individual or a group of individuals that appear to be street homeless?
For the most immediate response, New Yorkers who see individuals they believe to be homeless and in need should contact 3-1-1 via phone or mobile app and request outreach assistance. You should call 911 if the individual appears to pose an immediate risk to themselves or others or there is criminal activity.

What happens when I call 311 to report a homeless New Yorker in need of assistance?

  • Individual calls 311 and a Service Request (SR) is created
  • SR is evaluated and assigned to a service provider or a partner Agency, like NYPD, as needed
  • If assigned to a service provider, outreach team is dispatched within an hour of receiving the request
  • Service provider outreach teams attempt to locate that individual and if found directly engage the individual, assess for safety and encourage them to accept services and transition off the streets.
How do outreach teams engage a homeless New Yorker in need of assistance?
Experienced outreach teams from not-for-profit service providers canvass the five boroughs 24/7/365 as part of our citywide effort to identify and engage individuals who may be homeless, encourage them to accept services, and ultimately help them transition off the streets. Additionally, DHS performs joint outreach operations with community stakeholders and Agency partners, including the NYPD, the Parks Department, the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, and the Department of Transportation to utilize each Agency's expertise, engage more New Yorkers, and offer more supports. Outreach teams have helped approximately 2,000 homeless New Yorkers off the streets citywide, thanks to new investments and a doubling of the size of those teams.

More info here. 

UPDATE 10 PM - This Roosevelt Islander Instagram comment expresses what many fear: 

There's too many of them. Im sorry if this sounds insensitive but I don't want to worry about being pushed into the tracks or harassed. I don't want to worry if the guy mumbling is going to do something crazy. The island continues to have garbage everywhere. I don't know what the solution is but its not the subway. Mental health is a serious problem for a lot of them . The new guy that sits in the station is always drinking and was passed out on the stairs the other day. I wasn't sure if he was alive.
UPDATE 1/19:

Thursday, February 17, 2022

NYC Mayor Eric Adams Looking Forward To Ride On Roosevelt Island Tram And Discussing RIOC Board Issues With Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright - Tram Is One Of NYC's Great Attractions Says Mayor Adams

City & State political reporter Jeff Coltin  tweeted last week:

That's right. 

During the February 9 NY State Assembly budget hearings, Roosevelt Island's Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright asked NYC Mayor Eric Adams: 

... As far as Roosevelt Island, it's governed by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation. As Mayor, you have appointments to that Board and for several years now there has been no woman appointed to the Roosevelt Island Board. So who is the point person on your team that I could sit down with and meet to review the composition of that Board...

Mayor Adams replied: 

... Let's take a trip out to Roosevelt Island together. You know, I'm looking forward to that Tram ride. I think it's one of the greatest attractions we have in the city. We can do a real analysis of the concerns there. You should reach out to Deputy Mayor Maria Torres Springer to talk about the Board and moving forward....

As reported January 24, Ms Seawright and State Senator Jose Serrano introduced legislation regarding appointment of Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board Directors. The legislation was approved by the State Assembly. 

 According to this February 14 press release from Ms Seawright's office:

The New York State Assembly approved Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright's legislation that will allow residents to have a majority vote on the governing board of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation.

The measure is part of a series of reforms to bring great accountability and transparency to the board, which serves more than 12,000 residents. Under the Seawright legislation, five of the nine appointees to the board must reside on the island. The governor appoints four resident board members. The mayor appoints one resident board member.

The approved measure now goes to the Senate, where a similar action is under the sponsorship of State Senator José Serrano.

"I'm pleased that the voice of the residents of Roosevelt Island will not only be heard but also be a force on the board for constructive change," said Seawright. "We are one step closer to achieving that goal. Given the Roosevelt Island community's unique governance structure under a State Public Benefit Corporation, resident perspectives and voices must be represented on RIOC's board of directors."

Other provisions would:

  • Clarify the residency requirement for certain public appointments to the Board of Directors of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation and stipulate for their immediate resignation from the board upon the termination of such residency;
  • Provide for the appointment of a successor within 60 days when a board vacancy occurs within an unexpired term;
  • Require the posting of job vacancies on the corporation's website.

A separate bill sponsored by both legislators would also require residency for the corporation's Chief Executive Officer. A non-resident Chief Executive Officer would be required to relocate to the island within one year of appointment.

A long time Roosevelt Island resident adds:

... about Mayor Adams & the Tram. I sure hope someone on his Team tells him it’s more than just an “attraction”.
Well, even Jerry Seinfeld thinks of the Roosevelt Island Tram as an amusement attraction.


Roosevelt Island is looking forward to seeing Mayor Adams on the Tram and learning more about our unique little community.

But, Mayor Adams, like everyone else, will not be able to use the MTA OMNY to get on the Roosevelt Island Tram as reported here.

Wednesday, February 16, 2022

Community Board 8 Roosevelt Island Committee Virtual Zoom Meeting Thursday February 17 - Learn About RIOC Capital Projects, Coler Task Force Update, Roosevelt Island Bridge Bike Lane Resurfacing & Nellie Bly Girl Puzzle Presentation By Sculptor Amanda Mathews

The Community Board 8 (CB 8) Roosevelt Island (RI) Committee

... addresses issues facing Roosevelt Island such as the protective seawall on the island and land lease that is held by New York State. This committee meets on an as needed basis on the third Thursday of the month.
  • Lynne Strong-Shinozaki, Chair 
  • Paul Krikler 
  • Sharon Pope-Marshall 
  • Barbara Rudder
The CB8 RI Committee is meeting Thursday, February 8 at 6:30 PM via Zoom. The Agenda items are:
  1. Presentation by Amanda Matthews Sculptor of “Girl Puzzle” 
  2. Update on Capital Projects from Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation 
  3. Update on Coler Taskforce 
  4. Status of Resurfacing on Roosevelt Island Bridge 
  5. Old Business 
  6. New Business
Click here to receive access for the Zoom meeting.

Here's video from the last CB 8 RI Committee meeting last November 18.

Tuesday, February 15, 2022

When Will OMNY Fare Collection System Be Installed On Roosevelt Island Tram Asks Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright To MTA Chair Janno Lieber At Transportation Budget Hearing Today - What About Seniors And Disabled People OMNY Reduced Fare Discounts Seawright Asks Too?

An update.

As reported February 10:

... Roosevelt Island NYC Council Member Julie Menin, Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright and State Senator Jose Serrano issued this press release demanding OMNY installation on the Roosevelt Island Tram. According to the February 10, 2022 press release:

Council Member Julie Menin Demands OMNY Installation on Roosevelt Island. Tram Commuters can not access OMNY free transfers or utilize fare-capping pilot program. RIOC Missing Out on Critical Funds By Not Using OMNY 

The Offices of New York City Council Member Julie Menin, New York State Senator Jose M. Serrano and New York State Assemblymember Rebecca Seawright have requested the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (RIOC) advance the timeline for the installation of the One Metro New York (OMNY) system on the Roosevelt Island Tram. The letter sent by the Office of Council Member Julie Menin addresses RIOC President and CEO Shelton J. Haynes as the Roosevelt Island Tram remains the last MetroCard only station within the MTA system...

Today, Assembly Member Seawright asked MTA Chair Janno Lieber about installing the OMNY fare collection system on the Roosevelt Island Tram and reduced fares for seniors and disabled people using the OMNY system. 

According to Mr. Lieber:

On the issue of the Tram, which I rode for many years, I know it's an important feature of the Roosevelt Island community. The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp operates it, not the MTA. 

We will make sure there is a plan to get it OMNY equipped. I don't know why it hasn't been yet but it is not part of the system. That may be part of the explanation but it's a fair point and we will make sure it gets done....

Mr Lieber added that OMNY reduced fare discounts for seniors and disabled people will be coming in the next 3-6 months.

More info on Roosevelt Island Tram OMNY service at this prior post.

UPDATE 2/17 - Below is letter sent today by RIOC President Shelton Haynes in reply to the Menin/Seawright/Serrano OMNY letter.

Monday, February 14, 2022

In The Footsteps Of Nellie Bly Free Virtual Zoom Lecture Tuesday February 15 With Author Rosemary Brown And Girl Puzzle Sculptor Amanda Mathews Hosted By Roosevelt Island Historical Society And NYPL Roosevelt Island Branch

The Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) and New York Public Library Roosevelt Island branch are hosting a free virtual lecture - In The Footsteps of Nellie Blly - via Zoom on Tuesday February 15 at 6:30 PM.

According to the Roosevelt Island NY Public Library branch:

Tuesday, February 15, 2022, 6:30 - 8 PM

A celebration of the life and legacy of Nellie Bly – journalist, adventurer and humanitarian – on the centennial of her death (January 27, 1922) with a focus on her record-breaking race around the world declared ‘the most remarkable of all feats of circumnavigation ever performed by a human being,’ by The New York World, 1890.   

Rosemary J Brown is a London-based journalist and author of Following Nellie Bly: Her Record-Breaking Race Around the World (Pen and Sword Books, 2021) where she re-traced Bly’s epic 72-day journey to pay tribute to the pioneering woman now commemorated in the recently inaugurated The Girl Puzzle monument on Roosevelt Island. Brown is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society with a quest to get female adventurers ‘back on the map.’

Rosemary will be joined by Amanda Matthews, the sculptor of "The Girl Puzzle'' located on Roosevelt Island.  Amanda is an award-winning sculptor and designer of public art and the space it inhabits.  She is also a public speaker and the CEO of Prometheus Art, a Design/Build Firm owned with her partner/husband, Brad Connell, located in Lexington, KY. Matthews’ work reflects a commitment to women, fairness, civil rights, and lifting muted and marginalized voices.  She designs large-scale monuments and installations with emphasis on accessibility for all people. Her work recognizes and honors the plight of women, those who are marginalized, the LGBTQ+ community, and others who are still seeking equal rights and representation.

Register here to attend the lecture

As reported December 12, 2021:

The ribbon cutting and opening ceremony of last Friday's "The Girl Puzzle" monument honoring journalist Nelly Bly at Lighthouse Park is not only a local Roosevelt Island story.

"The Girl Puzzle" Nelly Bly monument, designed by Amanda Mathews, is also a national story and was covered by the CBS Saturday Morning TV program. Watch the video, it's well done and informative.

Also, here are the remarks of Ms Mathews at "The Girl Puzzle" ribbon cutting and grand opening ceremony on Friday December 11, 2021.

More on "The Girl Puzzle" at this prior post.

Sunday, February 13, 2022

Beautiful Aerial View Of Roosevelt Island And Rest Of NYC Seen From Plane Flying High Above On A Very Clear Night, View Of NYC East River Skyline Seen From Roosevelt Island Not Too Shabby Either

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports: