East Harlem, Underwater

With climate change predicted to bring more flooding, heavy rains, storms, and more, it’s important to think about how vulnerable your home/apartment/block/community is.

This map, showing flood zones in 2012 (essentially shows the flooding caused by Sandy):

The following map, however, shows what a Sandy equivalent storm will do to our coastline in 2080:

And the difference is because as we all burn fossil fuels, the resulting warmer ocean temperatures results in more voluminous water that rises higher than current sea levels (warmer water expands), and all those glaciers melting day by day by day, are causing sea levels to rise.

Note that even if you don’t see your home in the ‘black’ areas of this map, ask yourself where are those residents going? Where are the responders? Where are the hospitals? The roadways? And so on.

To see a full report on this issue, and to search the map yourself, see:


Federal Housing Policy Discussion with IssueVoter

Join IssueVoter, a non-partisan non-profit, and William Smith, District Leader of the New York County Democratic Committee representing the 68th District, for a federal housing policy briefing.

Meet us on Zoom on Thursday, September 22 at 5:00 PM Eastern Time as we discuss federal housing legislation and how to make your voices heard in Congress.

IssueVoter is a nonpartisan, nonprofit online platform dedicated to giving everyone a voice in our democracy. Our free public service makes civic engagement accessible, efficient, and impactful.
IssueVoter informs you of legislation affecting issues you care about, sends your opinions to lawmakers, and helps you see how often you were truly represented.

Go For A Bike Ride This Morning

Citi Bike Tour: Upper Manhattan, Bronx, and Randall’s Island
Journey your way through the rich history and culture that exists Uptown on a Citi Bike. Along the 11-mile excursion, you’ll traverse Washington Heights, the South Bronx, Randall’s Island, and Central Harlem. The free bike tour is sponsored by Active Plus NYC, Citi Bike, and the Frederick Douglass Boulevard Alliance. Spots are limited. Saturday, Aug. 20, 10:30 am

Governor Hochul Announces Funding to Renovate the Schomburg

Free Cooking on the Farm

Join RIPA for our Cooking on the Farm with Families event! We will be hosting the free event at the Urban Farm this Sunday, August 21 from 3 PM to 4:30 PM

We will be making a scrumptious, seasonal entrée with Chef Angelica Vargas, using ingredients picked from the Farm just that morning. Ingredients will include radishes, beets, peppers, and more!

A main flavor profile of this meal will be papalo, a Mexican herb that is said to taste like a cross between arugula, cilantro, and rue. The first 15 attendees to arrive will be able to participate in the cooking demonstration. 

We hope to see you on the Island this Sunday! 

Eric Adams Visits Lex/125


A History of Methadone and Harlem

Across New York City, a certain kind of medicine is administered not in a regular pharmacy or a doctor’s office, but in its own kind of space altogether. Most often, these are brick-and-mortar locations, clustered in lower-income communities of color; increasingly, such treatment sites are mobile and distributed. In either case, one specific type of person seeking medical care is being segregated from nearly all others. Opioid addiction may have received more attention in recent years, but the geographic footprint and spatial practices of methadone maintenance treatment remain hyper-concentrated and sequestered. Communities such as Harlem are overburdened with facilities providing care for a large proportion of the city’s estimated 28,500 people in recovery; yet there are very few methadone clinics to be found in wealthier, whiter neighborhoods such as the Upper East Side. Meanwhile, patients themselves have long borne the brunt of controversy and conflict with neighbors and the state alike, compounded by familiar vectors of discrimination and policies that conflate disease with crime, and treatment with punishment. As the City opens the country’s first officially-sanctioned supervised injection sites, charting a new direction in harm reduction, Zoe Adams explores the fraught history of New York’s methadone clinics, and questions whether one particular form of healing needs its own separate space in the first place.

To read more of Zoe Adams’ article, see the link below:

Randall’s Island Wins Grant to Improve the Shoreline

The New York City Department of Parks and Recreation and RIPA (Randall’s Island Park Alliance) has recently announced $4.3 million in funding toward a multi-use pathway repair and living shoreline restoration project. This vital funding will help the Randall’s Island Park Alliance address erosion, stabilize the shoreline, and improve coastal resiliency along the Water’s Edge Pathway. 

Half-mile stretch of Randall’s Island pathway and shoreline to be reconstructed

NYC Parks Acting Commissioner Liam Kavanagh and Randall’s Island Park Alliance (RIPA) President Deborah Maher today announced funding for multi-use pathway repairs and living shoreline restoration at Randall’s Island Park. The $4.3 million project, funded by a $3.72 million grant from NYS Department of State and $660,000 from RIPA, will address erosion, stabilize the shoreline, and improve the park’s coastal resiliency along a half-mile stretch of the park’s Water’s Edge Pathway.

“Randall’s Island Park stands out as both a waterfront resource and a recreational hub for surrounding communities, and thanks to this $4.3 million project the park is on track to become more resilient while offering new programming opportunities for all New Yorkers,” said NYC Parks Acting Commissioner Liam Kavanagh. “We thank the Department of State and Randall’s Island Park Alliance for their support, and we are proud to partner with RIPA to significantly improve the park’s shoreline and multi-use pathway.”

“During the height of the pandemic, we saw greater visitation from our surrounding communities, an increase of nearly 60% coming from East Harlem alone. The popular pathway, comprising paved bike routes and pedestrian paths, has been catalytic in the Park’s transformation, and serves both commuters and recreational visitors. We are excited to receive the grant and we look forward to working with NYC Parks to restore and enhance the shoreline,” said Deborah Maher, President of the Randall’s Island Park Alliance.

The project will significantly improve the shoreline along the Water’s Edge Pathway, which runs between the 103rd Street Footbridge and the Little Hell Gate Inlet. Eroded pathway sections will be repaired and expanded to create new areas for shoreline activities including fishing, picnicking, and seining. The project will also perform seawall repairs and add nature-based features and native plantings, improving wildlife habitat and providing opportunities for educational field trips and community science projects in the area.

New York City Remains a Transit (and Walking) City

Mode share varies greatly across the city, but New York continues to be a place of sustainable travel. With the exception of eastern Queens and Staten Island, the majority of trips taken by residents are made by a sustainable mode, such as walking, transit, or cycling. Sustainable mode share is as high as 85% in parts of Manhattan, with the city overall averaging 64%. These percentages are despite declines in bus ridership since 2013 and an uncertain future for the subway after pandemic losses. New Yorkers make most trips by walking, and daily cycling trips are growing (580,000 daily trips in 2019 versus 380,000 in 2013).

New York is a leader in sustainable mode share among its American peers. Even Chicago, a transit-rich and pedestrian-friendly city, has a significantly lower sustainable mode share. Internationally, New York fares well compared to London and Berlin, but falls short of Paris and Hong Kong (gold standards of 87% and 93%, respectively, according to the 2016 NYC DOT Strategic Plan).

And Some New Yorkers Pay a Larger Share of Their Income for Transportation

Most New Yorkers benefit from having such a robust transit system – on average, transportation costs made up only 9% of household costs on average, compared to an average of 12% nationwide. Looking closer, however, transportation is a significantly larger portion of household costs in some New York City neighborhoods, particularly more car- dependent neighborhoods such as Staten Island, southeast Brooklyn, eastern Queens, and the northeast Bronx, per the Center for Neighborhood Technology’s Housing and Transportation Affordability Index. And, of course, the cost of transportation can be a much higher burden for those who have lower income.

New Signage on Randall’s Island

This past year, RIPA installed new signage of all kinds at Randall’s Island Park – providing improved wayfinding and information to the increasing number of New Yorkers who visit.

Working in partnership with NYC Parks, RIPA installed new vehicular signage, working on a subtraction principle. We removed chaotic existing signage, standardized nomenclature throughout the Park, and provided necessary information only at key decision points, edited for ease of comprehension.

RIPA also updated the on-site Park maps directed toward pedestrians and bicyclists to reflect changes and improvements over the years since they were first installed, from increased bus stops to new pathway routes. 

New three-sided gateway maps now welcome visitors at key bicycle and pedestrian entry points; starting in 2022, these will provide seasonal programming information alongside the colorful Park maps and regulations. Finally, please see RIPA’s website for special maps with information regarding field usepicnicking, and running on the Island.

Whatever you come for, and however you get there, enjoy the Island in 2022

How Safe Do You Feel On The Subway?

(MTA Wants to Know)

MTA Logo


Our top priority at the MTA is giving our customers a safe ride.

We want to help New York City get moving again, and to do that you need to feel safe riding with us. And right now, we know that many of you don’t, which is why we are working every day with our partners in the City and State to change that. Please take this short survey to let us know how you feel about safety concerns in the subway system. Your answers will be kept confidential and carefully reviewed by MTA leadership.
The survey takes three to five minutes to complete. Please use the “Take the survey” link to begin.
Thank you for your help.
-Sarah Meyer, MTA Chief Customer Officer

Take the survey.

2020 Census Data on Hispanic New Yorkers

A view of Zip Code 10035 from the 2020 Census. You can see that over the last 30 years, the percentage of Hispanics went down from 62% to 54% – still the largest group by far, in this zip code.

In this map of northern Manhattan (above) you can see the grayer areas where the percentage of Hispanics went down, and the yellow areas, where the percentage of Hispanics increased.

For more, see:


Seen on 5th Avenue at 127th Street

Guardians of the connected world? Really?

Snowshoeing on Randall’s Island?

Stay warm with RIPA this weekend! RIPA invites you to join us on Saturday, February 5 from 3:30-5 PM for our free Hot Cocoa and S’mores event! Bring your family and friends and enjoy a tasty treat; there is even the possibility of snowshoeing for children (if there is still snow). 

Please note: Most of RIPA’s snowshoes will fit children between the ages of 6-15 years old. Adults are welcome to join if they feel they can do so comfortably without snowshoes.   

This event is free and registration is not required. Click here for details.

Location: North Entrance, Icahn Stadium, near Field 10

NBT Dedication

Barbara Ann Teer speaks about the inspiration of her sister in forming and developing the National Black Theater at this groundbreaking dedication clip (click on the chevron pointing right on the text, below) :

And to hear more about the devistating fire that (in part) sparked the rebirth of the National Black Theater, see:

Randall’s Island to Get $1,000,000 (almost) For Improvements

The total of $950,000 recently awarded by Assembly Member Robert Rodriguez, Manhattan Borough President Gale Brewer, and Council Member Diana Ayala will further ongoing efforts by the Randall’s Island Park Alliance, working in partnership with the NYC Parks Department, to restore and develop the Park as one of New York’s premier destinations for sports, recreation and relaxation. The generous support will help realize a vision of Island-wide pathway improvements to better connect visitors with Park resources, a goal set forth in the 2012 RIPA Strategic Plan, developed in collaboration with NYC Parks, the RIPA Board of Trustees, local stakeholders, elected officials, and on-Island agency stakeholders.

Guided by the Strategic Plan, RIPA is undertaking a comprehensive and innovative complex of access improvements to improve connections between the Island’s main bicycle and pedestrian access points and popular destinations including Icahn Stadium, the Park’s many playing fields, and the Urban Farm and adjacent playground. New pathways will also facilitate multimodal travel through better connections between these destinations and the Park’s major parking lots, bus stops, and new Citibike stations.

“I am pleased to contribute funding that will provide increased accessibility to a Park that is an oasis for New Yorkers,” said Robert Rodriguez, New York State Assembly Member. “The contribution will help move this initiative forward, and fosters RIPA’s careful plan that focuses on access improvements alongside sustaining and programming the Island’s resources.”

“Increasing accessibility within the Park by creating Island-wide pathway improvements will better connect New Yorkers with Park resources and RIPA’s free educational and family-friendly programming,” said Manhattan Borough President Gale A. Brewer. “Direct access to the Island’s restored natural areas and green space is beneficial for all, and we are glad to contribute to these efforts.”

“Randall’s Island Park is a precious resource for the City of New York, and we are glad that we are able to contribute funding that will accommodate the continuously growing number of visitors and commuters traveling through the Park by foot and bicycle,” said New York City Council Member Diana Ayala.

“For almost 30 years, with the support of the City of New York, the Alliance has spearheaded the restoration and development of the Island. We truly appreciate the continued support of Assembly Member Rodriguez, Borough President Brewer, and Council Member Ayala as they help us achieve our mission to provide equitable access to green space, free educational programming, and world-class facilities to all New Yorkers, especially our neighbors in East Harlem and the South Bronx. Increasing the pathways throughout the Park will contribute to these efforts and benefit the over four million individuals who visit the Island annually,” said Deborah Maher, President of RIPA.

The combined projects build upon decades of public-private partnership to create unprecedented connections that will foster environmental exploration and augment access to recreational facilities and free programming for the millions of New Yorkers who visit each year. In coming years, these connections will foster access to exciting developments including an expanded Sportime Tennis Center, the new Drive Shack golf center, and a central Nature Center hosting RIPA’s many public programs.

Shake Shack + Slutty Vegan = Harlem Week Burger Promotion

Head over to 125/Madison today through August 15th, to order a Slutty Vegan burger at Shake Shack. This limited time offer is a collaboration for Harlem Week

To learn more about the burger and its genesis, see:



Throughout the city, neighborhoods with higher rates of poverty also experience higher rates of childhood asthma, which we can see from the rates of emergency department visits.

On the scatter plot below, each dot represents one neighborhood. Its horizontal position represents the neighborhood’s poverty rate, and its vertical position represents its asthma rate. The pattern of dots, roughly grouped around an ascending line, shows a connection between poverty and asthma: the higher the poverty rate, the higher the asthma rate.

Why does this connection exist? The connection between poverty and asthma is due to a variety of factors, including:

  • A shortage of healthy housing in poor neighborhoods means that people experience a range of housing conditions like mold, pests, and leaks that trigger asthma and make it worse.
  • A lack of access to high-quality health care means that people with asthma may not be on the right medicine to prevent attacks.

Some studies have concluded that the place you’re born largely determines your economic future. Other studies have concluded that where you’re born is determined by income, race and ethnicity.

This means that in our society, too many outcomes of health and well-being are determined before we’re born. To improve public health, we need to address poverty and racial inequities.

Run Like An Olympian

Train like an Olympian with RIPA! Join us on Thursdays from 6 – 7 pm in July and August at Icahn Stadium to enjoy a walk, jog, or run around our “icahnic” track! Our International Amateur Athletic Federation (IAAF) approved track has hosted Olympic Trials and seen records set by Jesse Owens, Meseret Defar, and Usain Bolt. 

Participants must be 18 or older to participate. This is a free event, but registration is required. For more information on this event series, please visit RIPA’s website. We hope to see you there!

P.S. Congratulations to all the athletes participating in the 2021 Tokyo Olympics! To celebrate the Olympic games, check out our video of when RIPA partnered with the Manhattan Soccer Club to surprise five lucky athletes with a special virtual interview with US Women’s National Soccer Team Captain Carli Lloyd!

As Seen on 2nd Avenue

140% Increase in Visitors to Randall’s Island

RIPA (the Randall’s Island Park Alliance) emailed yesterday that the number of pedestrians and cyclists who visited the park, increased by nearly 140% in recent months!

Randall’s Island has served as a respite for all who come to walk, run, and bike along its ten miles of safe, open non-vehicular pathways. The Island boasts 330 acres of parkland with clean green space for recreation and a safe escape from city apartments.

RIPA encourages you to visit and enjoy picnicking, exercising, playing games, and having fun. RIPA has also been able to host a number of virtual and in-person yoga classes, Island tours, walks and many small group in-person outdoor events.

To learn more: https://randallsisland.org/