Firm Restrictions In Place

UPDATED PAUSE Roosevelt Island Details

Updated 7 hours ago David Stone
The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market is closed until further notice.
The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market is closed until further notice.
© David Stone/Roosevelt Island Daily

As of 8:00 p.m. March 22nd, New York State is under strict restrictions to prevent spread of the coronavirus. PAUSE shuts down all nonessential businesses and limits public activities and has been extended until April 15th. Here are some details, including Roosevelt Island specifics.

New York City Basics

According to Mayor Bill de Blasio:

The City will also enforce the following rules for non-vulnerable individuals with fines and mandatory closures:

  • No non-essential gatherings; any concentration of people outside their home must be limited to workers providing essential services
  • Practice social distancing in public (6 feet or more)
  • Limit use of public transportation to only when absolutely necessary.
  • Sick individuals should not leave home except to receive medical care.

But what about Roosevelt Island?

On Sunday, March 22nd, RIOC closed "all permitted spaces, including McManus Field and Firefighters Field... until further notice." The Roosevelt Island Garden Club also closed its public space. All other parks, playgrounds and promenades are open and welcoming appropriate activities, including social distancing.

Consistent with Governor Andrew Cuomo's guidance, RIOC closed the fields after groups were repeatedly observed violating social distancing regulations. RIOC's reasoning is that these fields are designed only for contact sports, which by definition are outside the guidelines.

Update 3-27-20: As the Roosevelt Islander reported, groups have been photographed playing pickup basketball outdoors behind Sportspark, but most residents are observing social distancing rules in our parks and promenades.

RIOC stressed that all promenades and parks, from Four Freedoms to Lighthouse, remain open, subject to social distancing. Please note however that Governor Cuomo has promised a crackdown on all locations if social distancing violations continue.

A group of residents quickly launched a petition drive, "RIOC: Keep our soccer fields open." You can sign the petition online here.

Seniors hit hard...

Stay at home restrictions limit contact with the outside world for seniors, including visitors. If you're over 70 or immune system compromised, you're required to wear a face mask when in the company of others. Solitary outdoor activities, i.e., walking or running, are permitted for now.

Here's the latest from the Senior Center: 

  • The Senior Center has limited quantities of a 3-day shelf-stable box (emergency boxes), if you would like to receive one,  please email your name, address, phone number, and apartment #. You can also call the senior center at 212-980-1888 press 1 and leave a message with the requested information. The City Meal box will be delivered Thursday, April 2nd to your home after 1:00 p.m.
FoodHelp NYC Locator You can get food today from New York City’s food pantries, which provide groceries you can cook at home, and community kitchens, which provide hot meals. Food pantries and community kitchens are located throughout the five boroughs. If you need food immediately, find locations near you by using our Food Map.
  • COVID-19- New York State Office of Mental Health FREE Emotional Support Hotline: 1-844-863-9314.

Foodtown announces senior citizen and immune compromised shopping hours. These give our most vulnerable neighbors extra protection against infection:

"Please prioritize the hours of 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 a.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday for our senior citizens and immune compromised neighbors to shop. It will be greatly appreciated."

What's open? What's closed?

Closed: all non essential services, such nail and beauty salons. Also, managers of Starbucks, Liukoushui Hot Pot, China One, Jupioca (no announcement) and Fuji East closed their businesses temporarily. New: The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market is closed until further notice. Also, as noted above, Jack McManus and Firefighters Fields along with all permitted space and indoor recreational facilities.


Groceries, etc: Foodtown, Bread & Butter Deli, Wholesome Factory and Duane Reade. Restrictions in most locations protect residents from hoarders.

Takeout and/or delivery food: Nisi (cashless), the café @ Cornell Tech (cashless), Subway, Piccolo Trattoria.

Others: Roosevelt Island Dry Cleaners, Island Wine and Liquor (store limit of four customers at a time and no browsing).

We will update as new information becomes available.

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