RI/IЯ Roosevelt Island Icon Dies But Does Not Go Away

Updated 2 weeks ago David Stone
View from the Visitor Kiosk, most likely placement
View from the Visitor Kiosk, most likely placement
Photo courtesy of the Roosevelt Island Historical Society

Brace yourselves, Roosevelt Island, the big red RI/IЯ Icon is no more. A facelifting name change now makes it the "RI Welcome Monument," according to the agenda for RIOC's Real Estate Committee meeting on Thursday. No kidding.

RIOC and Roosevelt Island's RI/IЯ Icon or Monument

Yes, neighbors, the RI/IЯ Icon, a tall pair of Helvetica fonts, has been promoted to "Monument."

A mere "Icon" no more, it's permanent placement is up for discussion with RIOC's Real Estate Development Advisory Committee on Thursday. This group gets the ball because financing was arranged in a lease amendment.

Yes, the meeting is open to the public, and love it, hate it or something in-between, you might want to see how that placement decision gets made. Your own thoughts and ideas ought to be expressed and shared with RIOC before the meeting to give them time to consider.

Decisions made in the heat of a moment or under immediate scrutiny are often not the best.

And this one will not be final. If the Committee makes any choice, it must still be ratified by a full Board vote, probably at its next meeting.

Strong feelings, pro and con, have been publicly expressed, and it's likely that Committee members have their own ideas. It's not simple.

The monument or icon will be something we live with here for a long time, unless the Board takes the unlikely step of reversing itself or decides not to park it anywhere in public.

RIOC President/CEO Susan Rosenthal has already expressed her approval, and the upgrade to Monument is a message. Hudson Partner David Kramer, who is overseeing the development, believes that his team has taken the right steps to deliver a an impressive, "fun" installation as part of a larger package of signage for the Island.

Have "fun" and "monument" been married before?

Google it, and the closest you get is "funny monuments." But if you look at what Reader's Digest reported, you aren't likely to find the comparisons similar.

It will all start coming out of the wash on Thursday at 5:30. We'll be there.

(Fingers crossed that, at a minimum, they lose the "Monument" tag. That's like pouring black paint over the fun part.)

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