On Friday, the New York Times published an article about the ongoing effort to bring a memorial to Roosevelt Island for FDR in the form of a public park. I was quoted for two points (1) that the Louis Kahn design which calls for trees on both sides of the park will block the 360 degree views of Manhattan and Queens and (2) that the island would be inundated by visitors. This second point is what I want to address here as I did in my discussion with Mr. Beyer, the Times Reporter, as my point had a bit more to it than what was published.
Yes I am concerned about how many visitors might come to the island. I hope a lot of visitors come to the island and all stop by the local RIHS Visitors Center, the local Strabucks, Duane Reade and Nonnos as well as hopefully further North on Main Street. My concern is not whether the island can handle the increased visitors but more specifically whether our transportation infrstructure can.
In the coming year the Roosevelt Island Tram is scheduled to be taken off line for several months, some expect a year, to be basically reconstruct the entire Tramway system, from new cables, new cabins, new mechanical systems, everything. The question will be whether this new Tram and the existing subway service will be able to handle not only the increase in tourists but the continued residential expansion of the island.