Wednesday, November 26, 2008

River Rd Water Main Repair Delayed 'til Tuesday

Water main repair delayed. Apparently Thanksgiving weekend was spared but residents of Roosevelt Island's Manhattan Park could have a rough time of it over the next few days. Not sure how this affects Gristedes but it must as far as some departments. According to the below email PS 217 is also to be affected so it is also unclear whether school will be interupted by the water main shut off.

------Original Message------
From: Steve Shane
Sent: Nov 25, 2008
3:13 PM
Subject: Water Main repair


See revised e mail below changing scheduled water shut off. Note shut off will now be either Tuesday or Wednesday night, depending on what is found as a result of the excavation to begin Monday. Apologies to all for inconvenience, but weather is a problem.

"Preparations for the water main shutdown, affecting: Manhattan Park, Gristedes, Motorgate, RIOC Transportation Garage, the US Post Office and PS/IS 217, have been delayed by the inclement weather. DEP and RIOC are forced to postpone the shutdown and repair until next week.

Excavation for the repair will resume Monday morning Dec. 1st.

Depending on the conditions encountered, DEP is tentatively scheduling an evening shutdown for either Tuesday 12/2 or Wednesday 12/3.

The shutdown would occur between 6 :00 PM and 6:30 PM, with an estimated duration of 8 hours. Because of possible repair complications, DEP urges residents to be prepared for a duration of up to 24 hours.

You will be contacted via e-mail as soon as the actual shutdown date is confirmed by DEP. If you have any questions, please contact Santo Verta at RIOC, 347-297-0367."


Thomas Turcic
Director of Engineering
Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation

1975 - The First Roosevelt Island Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving 1975 - Header

Roosevelt Island residents call them “pioneers” but this 1975 New York Times article refers to these first residents of the newly renamed Roosevelt Island as “pilgrims” on their first Thanksgiving on the Island. To view on the entire article double click the “partial” text provided below.

Thanksgiving 1975 - Partial

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

River Road Water Main Shut Down This Friday 11/28

Picture Courtesy the Roosevelt Islander.

According to an e-mail circulated by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation, this coming Friday Nov 28th, residents of Manhattan Park will find their water turned off due to a scheduled repair of the water main outside 40 River Road.

In addition to Manhattan Park, water will be turned off at PS / IS 217, Gristedes and the Motorgate Garage Complex. Residents are being warned that the shut off could last from 8 hours to 24 hours.

The above picture courtesy the Roosevelt Islander was from a Nov 17th post where construction related to AVAC repairs blocked off River Road.

Do all the lower escalators have to go "up"?

A reader commenting on our last post questioned why all four of Roosevelt Island's subway station escalators that run between the platforms and the station's lower mezzanine are running solely in the "up" direction:

"Why do both escalators from the platform to the mezzanine go in the up direction 24/7? Before the replacement we had one escalator going down and the other one up. Can we have this back?"
It is a good question. My kids have also been asking me why they can't take any of these escalators down to the platforms as well. Granted the stairs work fine to walk down to the platforms but they keep asking.

For them it's fun but for an individual that can't walk down stairs easily and for whom the escalators are a necessity having all four running in the "up" direction must be very annoying. Perhaps someone at the NYCTA figured walking up was harder so they arbitrarily set them all to "up"?

Note: The escalators in question here are not the six escalators that run between the street level down to the lower mezzanine.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Subway Stairwell Glass Panel Replacement?

Now that the escalators at the Roosevelt Island subway station have been replaced and for the most part are working normally it is time to submit our requests for general maintenance of this subway station.

For the past few weeks the stairwell down to the Manhattan bound platform has needed the glass / plexi panel at the base of the stair to be replaced. It has seen its caution tape slip and tear and as such tape disappears I worry that my kids and others will not notice the missing panel and perhaps fall through.

Ms. Deirdre Parker, spokewoman for NYC Transit, upon my request has notified the Station Department of the need to speed up this panel's replacement. If there are other requests I suggest calls be made into 311 or ket me know and I will pass the issues along accordingly.

Friday, November 21, 2008

The Red Bus: 13 Years at 25 Cents & Counting….

The last time Roosevelt Island residents saw a fare increase for the Red Bus was in June 1995 from a dime to a quarter. Before that it had been in May 1991 when the first fare of a dime was imposed ending years of free shuttle service.

According to Stephen Shane, President of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation, there are no current plans to increase the existing 25 cent fare but the possibility has been discussed. In today’s economy and the announcements regarding the proposed MTA service cuts and fare hikes one wonders how long RIOC can manage to keep the current 25 cent fare.

Some New Yorkers have stated the MTA should change the fare system to be distance based like Washington D.C. I can only imagine residents in Northtown arguing that their Red Bus fares should be capped at a quarter with Octagon residents being charged 50 cents.

Except for the Staten Island Ferry the fare for our Red Bus is probably the cheapest mass transit fare in the Five Boroughs. Let’s hope it stays that way for a long time to come.


Image pre formatting via Flickr by WireHead2501.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The Roosevelt Island Project - The Beginnning

A new video posted on YouTube speaks of Roosevelt Island as part of a neighborhod study and the video is titled "Bridging Boundaries - Roosevelt Island" and concludes wit the phrase "The Beginning".

Not sure where the study is but the video is quite a cool video post card of our island. Thanks to "idntlikeuattitude".

Monday, November 17, 2008

New Blackwell Park Playground Design

For several months now the former location of the Roosevelt Island "Castle Playground" just South of Eastwood / Roosevelt Landings and just Northeast of Blackwell House has been sitting empty behind steel fencing. Sometime in the last few weeks RIOC posted consruction info regarding the new park to be built there with images of the newly designed park.

The design is standard playground design with nothing truly new as compared to either of the other four larger island playgrounds but if it is buit by Spring who are we to complain. We will miss the distinctiveness of the former Castle Playground but not the cement hazards.

My understanding is that Nikki Leopold of Island Kids was involved in the design process, at least an earlier point in the process. No confirmation who the final design team included. No word yet from RIOC, in response to my emails, as to how physically the equipment pictured will be laid out on the ground.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

$3 Fare Card = $204 Break Even Monthly Card for Roosevelt Island Parents

Image per amNew York

One local paper ran its cover page today projecting a possible $3 fare card for the MTA, so I had to again determine what the break even for a Roosevelt Island couple that incurs 6 fares per day on the MTA would be. My wife and I incur approximately 136 fares /month which with a $81 montly card averages out to $1.19/fare.

Based on the below analysis my break even goes from $136/month at $2/fare to now a whopping $204 per monthly fare card if the full fare is raised to $3/ride. I have heard nothing about what the monthly fare cards might raise to but as long as it less than $204/month we'd be ahead. Yikes.

Future NY Times July 4, 2009 Edition Published: IRAQ WAR ENDS

Anyone know who printed this obviously fake but prospective New York Times paper dated Jluy 4, 2009? The headline reads "IRAQ WAR ENDS". The slogan is printed as "All the News We Hope to Print".

I was handed a copy at 23rd Street and 6th Avenue in Manhattan. There is nothing inside to indicate that this is a satire or what the group is that published this edition. In place of the masthead on the opinion page is a listing of abot 20 reporters and researchers. I have not googled any of those listed to see if their names are real persons.
The issue includes an opinion pieces attributed to Thomas Friedman with his pic. Very cool. If anyone knows where this came from let me know. My colleagues at work want their own issues.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

TV Alert: 11/13 Showing of Life on Mars at Goldwater

We all saw the "Life on Mars" signs all around Roosevelt Island and now you can see the episode they filmed this Thursday night November 13th. For a somewhat shaky video of the filming see the below YouTube clip posted by hughcree.

50 Cent "The Money and The Power" Filmed at Southpoint Park

In the premier episode of the new 50 Cent reality show "The Money and The Power" the opening scenes all took place at Roosevelt Island's Southpoint Park. No way this would have the same effect at an FDR Memorial Park. Looking like the man in charge 50 Cent started his show off letting his potential protege's know what he expected.

The episode titled "Choose your Crew Wisely" involved two teams being chosen and as their first task being chained together "chain gang" style and racing from Southpoint to a location in Brooklyn. How did most residents miss this as the two "crews" had to either run right up Main Street or else they ran on the Promanade facing Queens. The video episode cuts from Southpoint to the "crews" on the RI Bridge so itis unclear which way they went. I am assuming PSD and RIOC know for sure. Very amusing. Now we know what Southpoint was rented out for a few weeks back.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Community Board 8 Mtg Tonight re Tram Overhaul

Manhattan Community Board 8's Transportation Committee is sponsoring a public hearing this evening, starting at 7:00 pm, regarding the Roosevelt Island Tram. The discussion per the flyer abovce is to focus on the contract and construction plans for the Tram.

As opposed to many past CB8 meetings this hearing is NOT at the NY Blood Center but will be held at the Hunter College School of Social Work located at 129 East 79th Street in their auditorium.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

New On Line Group Forum Dedicated to Roosevelt Island

I created this evening a new forum, a Google Discussion Group titled Roosevelt Island 360, to allow ongoing discussions without the discussion being tagged to a specific blog post. If you are interested in starting a discussion feel free to join the group to do so.

I am going to see if this feature is worthwhile keeping and after a month if it it is being used I will keep it active. If not I will shut it down. So check it out and join the discussion. Keep reading the blog but feel free to check out what your neighbors or interested parties are saying about Roosevelt Island.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Main Street Showcase: Fantasy Paintings

The above photos, taken via cell phone today Nov. 5, 2008, don't do justice to the paintings currently on display in the showcase along Main Street just South of the hair salon at 523 Main Street. I am not sure who the artist is but I would love to see a giant apple up at Lighthouse Park.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Will Dem. St. Senate Give RI an Elected RIOC Board

For years a bill introduced by State Assembly Member Micah Kellner and before him Pete Grannis that would provide for a democratically elected RIOC Board would pass in the Assembly but die without a vote in the then Republican controllled State Senate. Can it be possible that now with that same State Senate no longer under Republican control that the bill will reach a vote and maybe even pass?

With all vigor Island residents and our new RIRA elected officers and Common Council should support such a measure letting Micah Kellner and State Senator Jose Serrano know that which they already know that the RIOC Board should be elected directly and no longer subject to the appointments of a sitting Governor and Mayor.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

WIRE: Local Roosevelt Island Election Results

The Main Street WIRE has published the election results on line as noted above.

Election Day Comes to Roosevelt Island


Just as the Federal, State, and local elections are taking place today so are the local Roosevelt Island Resident Association elections. Posters hit the Main Street kiosks in earnest only in the last two days as well as door flyers in many buildings. In addition to the executive offices noted above building representatives to the Common Council are elected from each residential building.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Polling Site Confusion re 455 Main Street ?

The Roosevelt Islander published a great summary of where Island residents are supposed to vote in the national and local elections. The RIRA election polling station will primarily be at PS 217 but Octagon residents will also cast their votes at Coler Hospital for RIRA as they will in the general elections.

Apparently there is some confusion with respect to residents of 455 Main Street as some residents have been assigned to Goldwater Hospital and others to PS / IS 217. If you have a official Board of Elections mailer identifying that states you are to go to one location as opposed to another I'd suggest you bring that mailer with you. Per the NYC Board website it appears that all 455 Main is assigned to Goldwater. My suggestion is to go early in case you need later to trek onto the other location. Fortunately the island is really not that big. It will be annoying but please vote.

Two great website:
Poll Locator & Registration Confirmation