Friday, June 16, 2023

No Roosevelt Island F Train Service From Manhattan This Weekend - RIOC PSD Chief Has A Tip For Residents To Avoid The Long Tram Lines, Show Your Metro Card And Skip To Front Of The Line

Here we go again. There will be no Roosevelt Island F Train service  

from Manhattan this weekend. 

According to the MTA:

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) will be running a Red Bus Shuttle

to and from Manhattan during certain time this weekend.

According to RIOC:

Dear Roosevelt Island Community:

Due to scheduled MTA work, there will be no Queens bound F-Trains from Manhattan to Roosevelt Island starting Friday, June 16th at 11:45PM to Monday, June 19th at 5:00 AM (F-Train service from Roosevelt Island to Manhattan will remain on a normal schedule). To help accommodate Roosevelt Island residents who are returning from Manhattan, RIOC's Transportation Department will be providing a Shuttle Bus to and from Manhattan on Saturday, June 17 and Sunday, June 18, 2023.

The Roosevelt Island Shuttle Bus to Manhattan will start at 3:00 PM. The shuttle will depart hourly from the Tramway, making all northbound local stops to Capobianco Field (Opposite PS/IS 217).

Return Red Bus service from Manhattan to Roosevelt Island will start at 3:30 PM. This bus will depart on the half hour from the Southwest side of 2nd Avenue, between 58th & 59th Street, and will make all southbound local bus stops (starting with 591 Main Street) to the Tram.

The last trip will depart from the Roosevelt Island Tramway at 7:00 PM.

The last trip will depart Manhattan at 7:30 PM. Please note that regular Red Bus service may run on an adjusted scheduled to accommodate the additional Tram shuttle service.

Thank you!

-Team RIOC

If the weather is nice, be prepared for long lines at the Roosevelt Island Tram this weekend.

During the June 13 Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department (PSD) Community Engagement meeting, PSD Chief Kevin Brown tipped residents for a way to skip the long Tram lines filled with tourists.

According to Chief Brown:

...   As soon as we see large crowds gathering over there, we have 2 or 3 of our officers over there and anybody with a Metro Card we move them right to the front of the line. Most of the Roosevelt Island residents have Metro Cards. They don't have to buy a Metro Card at the machine. We get them right on the front of the line so they can get on the Tram and back to their residence.... Anybody who has a Metro Card, we walk them right to the front...


Watch the full hour long PSD Community Engagement meeting at this prior post. 

Also, here's an update on the revised MTA's 63rd Street Line Rehab Project which will take Roosevelt Island F Train out of service for approximately 6 months beginning in late August to be replaced by a Shuttle Train Service between 21st Street/Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island and 63rd/Lexington Avenue stations. 

Image from MTA's Community Board 8 Presentation
The MTA presented the revised plan to Manhattan Community Board 8 Transportation and Roosevelt Island committees on June 7. Watch the full presentation below.

Thursday, June 15, 2023

Roosevelt Island Health, Wellness And Disability Fair Took Place Today At Good Shepherd Plaza - Over 30 Non Profits Bring Info To Residents And Vendors Say It Was Best Health Fair They've Been To

The Carter Burden Network (CBN) Roosevelt Island Older Adult Program and Roosevelt Island Disabled Association (RIDA) hosted a Free Health, Wellness & Disabilities Fair today at Good Shepherd Plaza.

I spoke with organizers Wendy Hersh, President of RIDA, together with CBN Roosevelt Island Older Adult Program Executive Director Lisa Fernandez and Outreach Coordinator Yulisa Santana about today's fair.

There were over 30 non profit organizations providing information to Roosevelt Island residents today including these listed in the flyer.

Ms Hersh was told by several vendors that it was the best health fair they've been at.

Contact RIDA President Wendy Hersh or stop by CBN Roosevelt Island Older Adult Program center at 546 Main Street if you would like more info.

RIOC Hosting Roosevelt Island Pride Flag Raising Ceremony Friday June 16 At Blackwell House - More Roosevelt Island Pride Events During Week Of June 26 to July 2 Celebrating Local Queer Community, All Are Welcome

According to the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC): 

To mark Pride Month, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation will be hosting a special flag raising ceremony this Friday June 16th at 11AM in front of Blackwell House (500 Main Street). Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation President Shelton Haynes will be joined by members of the Roosevelt Island LGBTQIA+ community to raise the Pride flag in celebration of island inclusivity and tolerance.

“Every year we proudly raise Pride flags across the island during the month of June, but this year we wanted to do something more to show our collective support for the LGBTQIA+ community on the island,” said RIOC President and CEO Shelton Haynes. “LGBTQIA+ rights are under attack across the country, and we need to show publicly that RIOC is always committed to supporting love and acceptance for all of our island’s residents. I’m really looking forward to this event and encourage everyone who has the time to join us this Friday morning in solidarity.”

The Pride flag raising ceremony is free and open to all members of the community. 

 Roosevelt Island resident and artist Thom Heyer adds:

I am SO thankful for ALL the staff at our local Roosevelt Island library! Kayleigh Salstrand, our children's librarian, recently asked me if I would create a mural on the blackboard of the children's library room to celebrate LGBTQ+ PRIDE Month. 

I was delighted to do this and to help create a safe place for kids and their diverse families to just discuss the options of what "different" can actually be. When I was a little kid I was different. I didn't have examples that affirmed that I was actually OK. I also didn't live in an environment that allowed me to discuss the infinite possibilities of what OK actually IS. 

 I'm honored to be able to help create a safe space for this kind of dialogue and I am thankful for ALL our Library staff who help do this EVERY DAY!............I LOVE being an Adult Gay Man....."Happy PRIDE ya'll!"

Check out the various Roosevelt Island Pride events during the week of June 26 - July 2

on the Roosevelt Island Calendar of Community Events.

Wednesday, June 14, 2023

Watch Video Of Very Informative June 13 RIOC Public Safety Department Community Engagement Meeting With Roosevelt Island Residents - Topics Include Recent Crime Updates, Smoke Shop, Tram Lines, Illegal Parking, Marijuana Smoking, Bread & Butter Construction, Southpoint Park July 4 Closing And More

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Public Safety Department (PSD) hosted a  community engagement meeting last night at the Good Shepherd Chapel.

RIOC PSD Chief Kevin Brown, Deputy Chief Anthony Amoroso, Hudson Related's Ralph Yoakam, NYPD 114 precinct Lieutenant Dickson and about 35 Roosevelt Island residents attended the hour long meeting. 

Chief Brown began the meeting reviewing and updating recent Roosevelt Island crime incidents followed by Mr Yoakam who reported on 

  1. the pending eviction proceedings against the Stationery/Smoke shop and 
  2. the Bread & Butter Deli construction work being done at Island House without the landlord's approval.

Among the other Roosevelt Island public safety issues discussed were:

  1. Roosevelt Island Tram Lines - how to make it easier for residents to get back and forth on the Tram when it is crowded with tourists. Use Metro Card to skip in front of line, said Chief Brown. Priority boarding for residents was also discussed but dismissed by Chief Brown using the F train analogy again.
  2. Illegal Parking on Main Street - suggestions included issuing more tickets, towing illegally parked cars and issuing parking sticker permits for residents only.
  3. Marijuana smoking on Main Street - Nothing can be done because Manhattan DA's office will not prosecute for smoking marijuana.
  4. Security during Pride Month events.
  5. Southpoint Park closing during July 4 Fireworks celebration due to NYPD security precautions.
Watch video of the full meeting.

PSD Chief Kevin Brown did an excellent job moderating the meeting and responding to concerns.

Yesterday, a Roosevelt Island Tipster reported:

This morning 11.30 on my way to the subway (I am resident of the island), I was attacked by a confused but aggressive man just in front of Starbucks. This man shout on me, kicked my cart and spit on me. People around did not move at all.

I called public safety as they were not there. Where are they? Why are they not staying in that location where all the neighborhood is passing by? At least they have to install cameras to monitor the aggressions.

I can’t believe this is happening here at Roosevelt Island. 

and sent an email to Chief Brown about the incident. 

Chief Brown replied:

I am extremely sorry for your incident today. The person who you spoke about was a male who was apprehended by the Roosevelt Island PSD officers. The male was evaluated by NYC EMS and was transported to NY Presbyterium hospital as an Emotionally Disturbed Person. Again, I am sorry for your incident but anytime you have any incident please call RIOC PSD we will always respond as quickly as possible.

The Tipster replied to Chief Brown:

Thank you very much for your quick course of action. Thankfully you are around. Is there any plan to improve the safety around the subway station as this episode is just one among others? Did you evaluate the potential of having video recordings or stationary PS agents?

I am not concern for myself but for our community, including the youngest and the oldest, who may not be able to handle the situation with someone who was trained to fight (as this man mentioned).

I will attend the meeting tonight.

This incident was mentioned during the Public Safety meeting last night. Chief Brown noted that the the emotionally disturbed person was apprehended by a Public Safety Officer 4 minutes after receiving a call about the matter. 

The Tipster noted:

The chief was very satisfied by the 4 minutes spent to arrest this man, I am more concerned by the absence of prevention of such unfortunate events.

Tuesday, June 13, 2023

1940's Welfare Island City Hospital Laundry Room Benches Painted And Refinished For Roosevelt Island Senior Center Outdoor Garden By RIOC - RIHS And Senior Center Say Thank You Shelton

Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) President Judy Berdy and Carter Burden Network Roosevelt Island Older Adult Program Executive Director Lisa Fernandez report about chipped and peeling benches from the 1940's Welfare Island City Hospital Laundry Room being painted and refinished for the outdoor garden at the Senior Center by the Roosevelt island Operating Corp. (RIOC) after a conversation they had with RIOC President Shelton Haynes.

According to Ms Berdy:

... We've been after RIOC for a little bit over a year and saying could you please help us get them refinished and they finally came through.

Ms Fernandez adds: 

Shelton did a little tour of the Senior Center just to stop and say hello. He said what can we do for the Senior Center. I said come out to the garden,  how about the benches. He had them done within a week. Within two weeks they were both done and returned to us. 

So thank you Shelton.

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Health, Wellness And Disabilities Fair Thursday June 15 At Good Shepherd Plaza - Over 30 Non Profit Agencies Will Offer Info On Services And Programs Available For You, Stop By To Learn More

The Carter Burden Network and Roosevelt Island Disabled Association (RIDA) are hosting a Free Health, Wellness & Disabilities Fair Thursday June 15 from 10:30 AM to 1 PM. 

According to RIDA, attending will be:

Over 30 non profit agencies that offer information on services and programs that are connected to disabilities, health and mental well being. Live Fitness Demos from Community Partners. 

Everyone should stop by. Resources for students, individuals with disabilities, adults and seniors.

Here's RIDA President Wendy Hersh describing the 2021 Roosevelt Island Health, Wellness and Disability Fair.


Stop by on Thursday June 15 to learn more.

Monday, June 12, 2023

Come Join RISA For Roosevelt Island Pickle Play Tuesday And Thursday Mornings, A Free Program For Adults Of All Ages - Rackets And Balls Provided, Just Bring Sneakers

The Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA) is hosting free Pickle Play Tuesday and Thursday mornings at the 2 new Roosevelt Island Pickleball Courts outside of the Sportspark recreational facility (250 Main Street)

RISA President Andrea Jackson says;

... Come on down...

and enjoy a game of Roosevelt Island Pickleball.

The Roosevelt Island Pickleball Courts are free and open 7 days a week from sunrise to sunset on a first come, first serve basis.

More info on RISA at their website.

Mayor Eric Adams Announces Food Education Roadmap For NYC Public School Students To Eat Healthy, Nutritious,Tasty Meals And To Understand The Food System - NYC Schools Kitchen Dashboard Has info On The Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 Cafeteria Meals

New York City Mayor Eric Adams submitted the op-ed article below to local NYC community media including Roosevelt Islander Online. According to Mayor Eric Adams: 

Here in New York City, we are lucky to have an abundance of food from all over the world, yet many of our families face food insecurity, and for some of our children, the breakfast and lunch they eat at school are their only meals for the day. This makes it even more important that we serve our students healthy, nutritious meals that look good, taste good, and are culturally appropriate.

As a city, we have taken important steps in this regard: we follow strict nutritional guidelines; we are offering more plant-based choices, especially on Plant Powered Fridays and Meatless Mondays; we’ve expanded Halal Kitchens so that 87 public schools are now certified to serve Halal meals; this year, we’ve committed $50 million to create a welcoming environment in more than 80 school cafeterias; $5 million to train our school food workers; and now we are adding a vital food education component to the mix.

Living in New York City, many of our young people only see food as a finished product on the shelf of a supermarket, in a bodega, or in a package. We want to help them understand how the food system works—everything from how we grow our food to how it arrives in our grocery stores and on our plates. We want them to be able to make healthy food choices and to analyze how the food system affects the climate, our economy, our diverse communities, and our health. Comprehensive food education can also help students develop an appreciation of the culinary traditions of our city’s many different cultures.

In order to achieve this, we must weave food education throughout the regular school day. Students can learn how to prepare food in the school cafeteria, visit a grocery store for a math or science class, take a trip to a farmers’ market, and so much more. Over 1,000 New York City public schools have gardens where students can learn how to plant and grow their own food as well.

In some of our low-income neighborhoods, families do not have access to supermarkets or other nutritious food sources. And since processed foods (like junk food) is often cheaper and more readily accessible than unprocessed foods, 40% of our students, particularly our Black and Latino students, are overweight or obese. This puts them at greater risk for chronic diseases like diabetes and asthma. By eating better at school and exercising more they can improve their health and the health of the planet. I know this firsthand: I was able to preserve my eyesight and reverse my Type 2 diabetes by adopting a plant-based diet.

Food insecurity and inequity is an ongoing problem in our city that affects New Yorkers’ physical and mental health. By serving healthier food in our schools and through comprehensive food education, we can transform our young people’s health and wellbeing, the health of their communities, our city, and our planet.

Watch video below for more info on NYC Roadmap for kids to eat better and build healthier schools


The recently launched NYC Schools Kitchen Dashboard has info on Roosevelt Island's PS/IS 217 cafeteria.

 More info on Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 including student meals here.