Friday, February 2, 2024

Roosevelt Island F Train Services Disruptions Every Weekend In February - No Roosevelt Island Subway Service To Manhattan This Weekend, No Subway Service In Either Direction Next 3 Weekends

The Roosevelt Island F Train Shuttle service is cancelled this weekend. Instead, there will be Roosevelt Island F and E Train service from Manhattan but no subway service from Roosevelt Island to Manhattan.

According to the MTA:

The MTA previously reported:

... Feb 10-12th, 17-19th, 24-26th:

  • In support of the ongoing 63rd St track replacement project, the F shuttle train will be suspended for the weekends of Feb 10-12, 17-19, and 24-26:
  • F shuttle train service will be suspended starting on Saturday at 5AM through Monday at 5AM on the weekends of Feb 10-12, Feb 17-19, and Feb 24-26.
  • Starting at 11:00 PM on Friday 2/10, 2/17, and 2/24 and for the remainder of each weekend, a free shuttle bus will replace the Q95 and Q94 and will extend to connect Roosevelt Island, 21 St- Queensbridge, and Queens Plaza, following the current Q94 overnight shuttle route.
  • This shuttle bus will run during daytime and overnight hours for the duration of the weekend and is scheduled to operate approximately every 5-10 minutes....

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) adds:

Dear Roosevelt Island Community:

The MTA has announced planned service changes to the F-Shuttle train service for Roosevelt Island every weekend during the month of February. Here is the information shared with us from the MTA detailing the changes in service for each weekend:

February 2nd – 5th: Roosevelt Island Subway Service to Queens ONLY

  1. Be advised of the following service changes for the weekend of Feb 2-5:
  2. F shuttle train service will be suspended starting at 11:45PM Friday 2/2 through Monday 2/5 at 5AM.
  3. Queens-bound E and F trains will be routed via the 63rd St tunnel, making stops at 57 St, Lexington Ave/63rd St, Roosevelt Island, and 21 St-Queensbridge.
  4. Q94 and Q95 bus shuttle service will be suspended. Free shuttle buses will run overnight starting at 9:30PM on Friday 2/2, Saturday 2/3 and Sunday 2/4 between 21 St- Queensbridge and Court Sq-23 St, stopping at Queens Plaza.
  5. For subway service to Manhattan from Roosevelt Island, customers can take a Queens-bound E or F to Steinway St or Jackson Heights-Roosevelt Av to transfer to a Manhattan-bound E or F.

Feb 10-12th, 17-19th, 24-26th: NO Subway Service on Roosevelt Island

The F shuttle train will be suspended for the weekends of Feb 10-12, 17-19, and 24-26:

  1. F shuttle train service will be suspended starting on Saturday at 5AM through Monday at 5AM on the weekends of Feb 10-12, Feb 17-19, and Feb 24-26.
  2. Starting at 11:00 PM on Friday 2/10, 2/17, and 2/24 and for the remainder of each weekend, a free shuttle bus will replace the Q95 and Q94 and will extend to connect Roosevelt Island, 21 St- Queensbridge, and Queens Plaza, following the current Q94 overnight shuttle route.
  3. This shuttle bus will run during daytime and overnight hours for the duration of the weekend and is scheduled to operate approximately every 5-10 minutes.

Other Methods of Travel

In addition to the MTA’s free shuttle bus, island residents may utilize the following methods of off-island transportation during all February weekends:

Red Bus Manhattan Shuttle: During all weekends in February RIOC will once again run a Red Bus Shuttle to Manhattan every Saturday and Sunday from 3:00pm – 7:30pm. The shuttle leaves from the Tram Station at the top of every hour and picks up returning riders from the Southwest side of 2nd Avenue, between 58th Street and 59th Street, on the half hour.

Tram: RIOC is running the Tram on a rush hour schedule every Saturday and Sunday from 7:00am – 10:00pm during the ongoing MTA trackwork. Please be advised that we expect longer than average wait times for the Tram while this emergency MTA work takes place, so you should plan your travel accordingly. Extra PSD officers will be stationed at both the Roosevelt Island and Manhattan Tram stations during these weekends, and if you are elderly or disabled and need help reaching the Manhattan side Tram platform, please make sure to speak with one of the PSD officers on site.

NYC Ferry: The NYC Ferry Astoria line serves Roosevelt Island and can provide off-island transportation to Queens and Manhattan. You can check its schedule here.

Q102 Bus: Travelers can also utilize the Q102 Bus to Astoria for off-island travel. You can view its schedule here.

Thank you!

Are You A Roosevelt Landings Resident? Your Participation Is Requested For Feedback On Issues Of Rent Increases, Maintenance, Pests, Smoking, Package Theft, Hot Water Issues & Positive Praise Too

A Roosevelt Landings resident reports

Residents of Roosevelt Landings have seen many changes to our building and community recently. Many folks have used various Facebook groups to express complaints or questions specifically in regard to (and not limited to): building quality, rent increases, maintenance issues, package theft, smoking, and hot water interruptions.

I wanted to make a space where residents can voice their concerns and not have them lost in the group forum. As many residents have seen large rent increases in the past year or so after the pandemic, it would be productive to gather feedback from residents so management can become more aware. You may remain anonymous if you wish and not include any identifying information, but building number is required. Your personal identifying information will not be shared with anyone, including management.

Many of us have called The Landings our home for years and I would hate to see large rent increases with no payoff cause residents to be displaced from their homes.

Please provide as much detail as possible.

Thank you so much for your participation!...

Click here to share your feedback about Roosevelt Landings.

As reported December 2, 2019:

Representatives of the new Roosevelt Landings ownership (L&M Development) discussed the affordability plan during October 7, 2019 RIOC REDAC meeting. 

 REDAC is the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Real Estate Development Advisory Committee.

More here on the 2019 L&M Development purchase of Roosevelt Landings.

Thursday, February 1, 2024

You're Invited To NYC Save Our Compost Professionals Teach In Saturday February 3 At The Roosevelt Island Garden Club - Family Friendly, Bring Your Food Scraps And Friends

The Roosevelt Island Garden Club reports: 

We are hosting a fun Compost Teach-in on Roosevelt Island Saturday, February 3.

Folks can bring their food scraps out to the community garden on that day. (You can bring a friend, too, but we won't compost them :) .

Two great teachers from the NYC Save Our Compost Coalition (Gil Lopez and Greta Wong)  will be there as well as lots of participating organizations: 

Just in...this great Op Ed written by Greta Wong was published January 30 in City Limits!

As previously reported, the Roosevelt Island Haki Compost Collective Saturday Food Scrap drop off site was ended last December 16 (at least temporarily, for now)

due to NYC Mayoral budget cuts.

Roosevelt Island Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance Teen Theatre Invites You To Presentation Of The Dining Room This Weekend Feb 2-4 - Get Your Tickets Now And Help Support Our Local Young Performers

Roosevelt Island's Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (MST&DA) Teen Theatre invites you to their presentation of The Dining Room by A.R Gurney. this weekend, February 2 -4. 

Photo From Irina Hage/Irina Images
According to MST&DA:

A finalist for the 1985 Pulitzer Prize for Drama, the play is set in the dining room of a typical well-to-do household, the place where the family assembled daily for breakfast and dinner and for any and all special occasions. The action is a mosaic of interrelated scenes—some funny, some touching, some rueful—which, taken together, create an in-depth portrait of a vanishing species: the upper-middle-class Americans of the last century. The actors change roles, personalities and ages as they portray a wide variety of characters, from little boys to stern grandfathers, and from giggling teenage girls to Irish housemaids. Each vignette introduces a new set of people and events; a father lectures his son on grammar and politics; a boy returns from boarding school to discover his mother's infidelity; a senile grandmother doesn't recognize her own sons at Thanksgiving dinner; a daughter, her marriage a shambles, pleads futilely to return home, etc. Dovetailing swiftly and smoothly, the varied scenes coalesce, ultimately, into a theatrical experience of exceptional range, compassionate humor and abundant humanity....

Click here for to purchase your tickets.

MST&DA's performance of A Dining Room 

Photo From Irina Hage/Irina Images

Photo From Irina Hage/Irina Images

a cast of 23 local teens 

Photo From Kristi Towey/MST&DA

Credit to the Creative Team as well.

MST&DA adds:

The Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance has offered music, theatre and dance training along with performance opportunities for all ages for 40 years in the Roosevelt Island community. Our Mission - The Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance strives to nourish creativity by providing high quality music, theatrical and dance training as well as performing opportunities to everyone in our diverse community. We believe that every person, child or adult, should have the opportunity to participate in the arts, regardless of cultural, socio-economic, ethnic background or age.

More info about upcoming MST&DA shows and classes (fitness, dance and more) available at their website and Instagram page.

Click here to get your tickets to MST&DA Teen Theatre presentation of A Dining Room. 

Photo Credit to local photographer Irina Hage of Irina Island Images.

Wednesday, January 31, 2024

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First Board Of Directors Meeting For New RIOC Leadership Team Thursday February 1, Come See What Happens And Ask Your Questions - Purchase Of 2 Diesel Red Buses On Agenda, Why Not Hybrid Buses Instead Asks Directors

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors will meet in person Thursday, February 1 at 5:30 PM in the Good Shepherd Community Center (543 Main Street) beginning at 5:30 PM. 

This will be the first full RIOC Board of Directors meeting under the new interim leadership team of Deputy General Counsel Gerrald Ellis and Chief Financial Officer Dru Amin with Board Member Howard Polivy acting as a dedicated liaison to them. This new leadership team is in place during the current absence of RIOC President Shelton Haynes and General Counsel Gretchen Robinson who are on paid administrative leave pending the investigation of employee workplace concerns brought against them.

You're invited to attend,  ask questions and share concerns about Roosevelt Island during the opening Public Session before the start of the RIOC Board meeting. Sign up to speak here.

Here's the agenda for the meeting.

Among the items on the Agenda are:

... 2. Authorization to Enter into Contract with New Flyer Industries, Inc. for the Purchase of Two Diesel Buses (Board Action Required)...

During the January 17 RIOC Operations Committee Advisory Committee (Ops) meeting,  RIOC Transportation Director Cy Opperman reviewed the status of the Roosevelt Island Red Bus Fleet and recommended the purchase of 2 new diesel powered buses.

Here's PDF of the presentation made by Mr Opperman to the January 17 RIOC Ops Committee.

During the Ops meeting, RIOC Director Ben Fhala asked if RIOC looked into purchasing electric or hybrid buses. RIOC Ops Chair Fay Christian would not allow Mr Opperman to answer the question because she ruled at the beginning of the meeting that only questions from Ops committee members would be taken and Mr Fhala is not a member of the Ops Committee. 

Here's video of the beginning of the Ops Committee meeting with Mr Christian declaring that only committee members could ask questions followed by the Red Bus presentation by Mr Opperman.

On January 25, RIOC Board Director Dr. Michal Melamed sent this message to RIOC Director Fay Christian:

I am sorry that I was not able to attend the last Operations committee meeting as I was out of the country, speaking at a medical conference. I watched the video and am aware of some of the issues that came up. I have several questions (below) to ask about the bus proposal.

  1. Can we be provided with multiple bids for both diesel and hybrid buses. In the current climate crisis, I am not sure why we should be getting diesel buses.
  2. Can we be provided with an estimated daily operational cost per bus for existing buses and those to be purchased, assuming a 12-year operational life for both hybrid and diesel options.
  3. Can you please clarify the decommissioning process for buses—do they get sold? If so, what is the plan to sell buses 5 & 6.
  4. Can we be provided with an update on the status of buses 5/6 and why they are not operational.
  5. Is there a plan to purchase a third bus within the next two years?
  6. Please provide a more detailed breakdown of the bus schedule, distinguishing between express and red buses, and outline hours of operation on weekdays and weekends.
  7. Can someone please explain the rationale behind not assuming the need for a full fleet during rush hours on weekdays (5:30 pm to 7:30 pm), and discuss the necessity of a full fleet prior to and after those hours.
  8. Can we be provided with a ridership breakdown (average commuters by the hour (or ¼ hour if available) of the day per bus), as well as a breakdown of ridership during special rides, including the number of people using those rides and the value they created.
  9. Explore & report on the possibility of purchasing two mini-buses, preferably electric or hybrid, and provide estimates from multiple vendors.
  10. Clarify the purpose of running buses when there is no tram or subway available in the early morning hours (after 2 am on weekdays and after 3:30 am on weekends) and provide information on the normal ridership during such times.
  11. During the subway shutdown during February weekends, can we consider rerouting all red buses to Manhattan to accommodate higher volume?
  12. Can we address the reported difficulties for the disabled community members in boarding buses due to issues with ramps. Break down the specific issues and explain why a manual ramp, suggested as a backup, was not purchased over three months ago. Are there any plans to acquire backup ramps to prevent such incidents?
  13. Can we explore the possibility of using contacts at the MTA to purchase buses through their vendors, and provide reasons if this option has not been pursued. 

I would appreciate answers to these questions. 

I would also like to request to move to a different committee, namely the Real Estate committee. I joined RIOC in order to try to help get medical care on the island. I think my talents would better serve the real estate committee than operations.

Thanks for your attention,

On January 28, RIOC Board member Ben Fhala added:

Good morning Local Media and stakeholders of RIOC,

As of my understanding, the meeting notice and agenda were posted online on Friday. However, board members have not yet received the agenda items. We will need your assistance in analyzing the materials when they become available, given the limited time we'll have for review.

Regrettably, the conduct of the operations committee chair during the meeting resulted in multiple items not being addressed through open and honest debate by the stakeholders that RIOC serves. Unfortunately, the chair allowed one board member to use inappropriate language multiple times and belittle other board members, creating a disheartening display of dysfunction.

Due to the time constraints, Dr. Melamed has submitted multiple questions to RIOC regarding the acquisition of the buses. We are confident in the validity of these questions and anticipate meaningful responses before proceeding with a vote. This discussion will take place during the board meeting due to the dysfunction observed in the operations meeting.

As for other topics on the agenda, we lack detailed information about them or their merit. We look forward to receiving guidance and insights from the community.

I would appreciate it if you could publish Dr. Melamed's questions and include/curate questions from the community, enabling us to provide the necessary oversight over RIOC. As @Visnauskas, RuthAnne (HCR) has often emphasized that resident board members are not expected to act as rubber stamps.

Thanks, Ben Fhala* Resident Board Member

*Disclaimer: All statements made by Ben Fhala are made in his capacity as a RIOC Resident Board member. He does not represent the entirety of RIOC or the full board but serves as a Resident Board member, offering information to the community and its stakeholders.

Don't know if there has been any response to Ms Melamed and Mr Fhala's questions.

Tuesday, January 30, 2024

Two Brothers Arrested With Arsenal Of Homemade Explosives, Ghost Guns & Hit List Of Cops, Judges, Politicians And Celebrities At Apartment Across From Roosevelt Island Bridge In Astoria Yesterday Announced Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz

A Tipster reported:

Are you going to do any reporting on the early morning police raid on the suspected terrorists arrested from apartment building across from the RI bridge on Vernon Blvd? Apparently police found multiple weapons, bomb making equipment, and partially completed bomb. 


 A Roosevelt Island resident asked this morning:

Any info on the weapon raid in the apt house on the corner of the Queens side of the R.I.bridge?
NBC New York reports:

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz and NYPD announced on (X)Twitter:

According to a January 29 press release from the Queens District Attorney's office:

Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz announced that Andrew and Angelo Hatziagelis were indicted on 130 counts of criminal possession of a weapon and related charges after an arsenal of improvised explosive devices and ghost guns, including assault rifles, was found inside an Astoria apartment they shared with their mother and another brother. Instructions for making a variety of bombs, anarchist propaganda and a “hit list,” with “cops, judges, politicians, celebrities” and “banker scum” scrawled on it, were also found during a search of the home....

 ... On January 17, law enforcement officials executed a search warrant on the brothers’ residence resulting in their arrests and the seizure of:

Eight operational improvised explosive devices (IEDs)

One partially constructed trip-wire IED

Two loaded AR-15 style ghost gun assault weapons, each with a detachable magazine, muzzle compensator and threaded barrel

Two loaded 9 mm semiautomatic ghost gun pistols

Two loaded 9 mm semiautomatic 3D printed ghost gun pistols

One partially constructed AK-47 style ghost gun

Over 600 rounds of ammunition for each of the firearms above

One 3D printer

Three sets of body armor

Six additional AR/pistol lower receivers

29 high-capacity ammunition feeding devices, 13 of which were personally manufactured utilizing a 3D printer

Tools to assemble ghost guns

Metal knuckles

A radio set to the frequency of the 114th Precinct in Astoria

Several electronic devices (phones, computer)

Numerous notebooks containing instructions on the manufacture of explosive devices and anarchist related propaganda

Explosive residue, and components to manufacture additional IEDs

Nine pyrotechnic smoke bombs

Upon execution of the search warrant at the apartment complex, which is located directly across from a Con Edison power plant, members of the NYPD Bomb Squad were called to respond and subsequently evacuated the building due to the discovery of the live IEDs.... 

Click here for the full press release from the Queens District Attorney.

RIOC Responds To Questions About Roosevelt Island Con Ed Work Today - Big Improvement In Communications Between RIOC And Local Press

I asked Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Director of Communications Bryant Daniels today: 

Con Ed is all over Roosevelt Island from the Sportspark/Tram area 

to the middle of Island. 

Do you know what they are doing?

Mr Daniels replied:

Two separate operations: at Sportspark, they’re repairing some burnt out wiring that had briefly caused black smoke to emanate from the manhole cover several nights ago. The problem did not affect any building’s electric. 

On the middle of the island, they’re performing some maintenance work on the feeders that go to the C&C buildings. They brought in emergency backup generators in case the work disrupts building service—though there are no reported power outages so far—and the buildings were notified ahead of time. PSD is also on site helping with traffic control.

This is a welcome improvement in relationship between RIOC and the Roosevelt Island media.

Monday, January 29, 2024

Sponsored Post - Check Out Café At Cornell Tech January 29 Weekly Menu For Daily Hot Lunch Meals, Specialty Sandwiches, Breakfast Items, Pizza Station, Salads, Coffee,Tea, Smoothies, Beer, Wine, Wifi & More - How Are We Doing? Send Your Feedback By Email Too

Check out the January 29 weekly menu at the Roosevelt Island Cornell Tech Café.

We want to hear from you. Feel free to email us with any questions or concerns. Thank you for taking the time to let us know how we are doing. Any feedback can be emailed to

The Cornell Tech Café is a great spot on Roosevelt Island   

for breakfast, Daily Hot Lunch Meals,  

 Specialty & Grab and Go Sandwiches, Make Your Own Salads, Flatbread and Neapolitan Pizza, Salads, Soup, Coffee, Smoothie

 beer, wine

and more.

Bring your laptop if you wish. The Cafe has very good wi-fi connection  

The Cafe is open Monday thru Friday 8am to 7 pm. Saturday and Sundays 11am to 5pm.

More info at the Cornell Tech Café website and Instagram Page.

See you soon at the Cornell Tech Café.

Single Stop Of Fedcap Group Offering Free Roosevelt Island Tax Preparation Tuesdays Between February 6 And April 9, Stop By The Senior Center For More Info And To See If You Qualify

Roosevelt Island resident Louella Streitz reports that Single Stop, a member of The Fedcap Group, is offering free tax preparation by appointment only on Tuesdays from February 6 to April 9 at 546 Main Street.

Click here or stop by the Roosevelt Island Senior Center (546 Main Street) Tuesday 10 am - 2PM for more information.