A Summer Tale of Two Roosevelt Island Landscapes

A Summer Tale of Two Roosevelt Island Landscapes

If anything emphasizes the schism between RIOC and how Roosevelt Islanders want to live, it’s the landscaping. The contrast is raw and inescapable in the community’s most active shared space: Riverwalk Commons.

by David Stone

The Roosevelt Island Daily News

RIOC “beautification” landscaping in Riverwalk Commons, Roosevelt Island’s village green.

Anyone getting a prescription filled, using the F Train Subway Station or simply wishing to sit quietly on one of the benches in the closest thing to a village green in New York City can’t miss it.

City landscaping is an oxymoron, but in Riverwalk Commons, RIOC has lost the plot, figuratively and literally.

Urban landscaping can bring several benefits to city dwellers, including:

  • Improving air quality
  • Reducing noise pollution
  • Providing green space for recreation and relaxation
  • Increasing property values
  • Attracting tourists and businesses

But although there are great examples nearby, RIOC seems almost unaware of its surroundings. Litter has been cleaned up, but raw earth where flowers should cheer passersby isn’t the best alternative.

Just around the corner, Hudson-Related does their own landscaping. It’s awesome, and it cycles through the seasons with new plantings. The state agency that never gets it wrong hasn’t noticed or hasn’t learned anything from noticing.

When contrasted with the artful beauty cycling through the season around Hudson-Related’s Southtown buildings, the reason may dawn on you.

Hudson-Related collects rents, counts on an upbeat community. They’re invested in fulfilling a satisfying mission for tenants daily.


At the core of Riverwalk Commons where visitors dine outdoors and commuters pass every day: This. RIOC has a “bare earth is beautiful” esthetic.

Well, they collect over $25 million in taxes from residents without consent, and they never consult with the community about anything. And they’re cheapskates when it comes to investing in the community.

That’s about all you really need to know.

Please toss in a couple of bucks to help us with expenses.

Thank you.

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