New York City

Related’s Roosevelt Island ignorance

Related’s Roosevelt Island ignorance stuns on several levels. From collecting money here for decades, the real estate giant learned next to nothing. And the published proof makes your head spin.

The Lighthouse on Roosevelt Island seen from Carl Schurz Park
Related’s Roosevelt Island ignorance includes calling this landmark the “North Point Lighthouse.” As historian Judith Berdy says, “There is nothing known as the North Point Lighthouse.”

A reader emailed me a link to Related Rentals’s blog: A Guide to Visiting Roosevelt Island.

Note: After this article was published, Related heavily edited their blog post. Most of the terribleness is gone, but they now list RIVAA as an “arts center,” not as grievously awful as “museum,” but still wrong. In their rewrite, they did not acknowledge previous mistakes. Trust me, they were there.

This Island Invites You to Rediscover New York City, its subtitle says.

It doesn’t go on to show anything like that, marking the blog post wrong from start to finish. In the last paragraph, Related Life tells us that one of the “transportation options available” is a “drive along Queensboro Bridge.”

That’s it. Like so many others who’ve never been here, they’re searching for that elusive Queensboro Bridge exit.

Dig into a real story Back to Damnation Island

They take your money, sprinkle a little on Trump, then act dumb…

Well, maybe it’s not an act. But can Related really be that ignorant about a neighborhood where they’ve had a footprint for twenty years?

The sad answer is: Apparently, yes.

For the record, Related manages rentals in Southtown’s eight buildings (and counting), and they partner with Hudson in the bottomless debacle known as “Main Street Retail.”

And they still don’t know shit from Shinola about Roosevelt Island.

The can’t get out of the first paragraph alive.

Roosevelt Island, Related rejoices, “…offers a nice respite from the hustle of downtown despite being so close to it.”

Uhm, that’s the Upper East Side, with a trickle of Midtown, that’s close to Roosevelt Island. From the top of a Tram tower, you can catch a fleeting, hazy glimpse of downtown clustered around the Freedom Tower.

So, Related doesn’t even know where we are exactly.

Related’s Roosevelt Island ignorance gets worse

The worst offense lands early, and after this disaster, I had to talk myself into reading the rest of Related’s drivel.

The awfulness takes root in their singing the praises of the founding family:

“The Blackwell Family were important figures in American history, who fought for the abolition of slavery, women’s suffrage, women’s rights, and temperance. Elizabeth Blackwell (1821-1901) was the first woman to retrieve her medical degree in the United States.”

Related Life

Sounds nice, huh?

Except that Blackwell Family has nothing to do with Roosevelt Island.




Sad thing is, Related knows this. All they need to do is read their own article.

“…the Blackwell Family who owned (Roosevelt Island) from 1686 to 1828,” it says.

But here’s the first sentence from the Blackwell Family link: “Hannah (1792–1870) and Samuel (1790–1838) Blackwell immigrated to the United States from England with their nine children in 1832.”

That’s four years after the real Blackwell family sold the Island and moved out.

Elizabeth Blackwell was among those nine, and amazing as she was, there’s no record of her even setting foot on Roosevelt, Welfare or Blackwell’s Island.

If Related can’t get even the basic history right — or less than ridiculous — the rest of the error prone article should come as no surprise.

Highlights: Roosevelt Island miscues…

If you have the guts to read the article, you may spot others, but here are my favorite screw ups…

  • Related thinks Blackwell House, once the center of a farm, is a “manor.” Look it up. They show the farmhouse off with a picture of the back entrance “borrowed” from Wikipedia.
  • Befuddled apparently by nearby Southpoint Park, Related creates something new, a plural “Four Freedom Parks.” Somewhere, they lost three of the freedoms.
  • Another invention is the “North Point Lighthouse.” Roosevelt Island historian Judith Berdy says it best: “There is nothing known as the North Point lighthouse.”
  • Where to eat? Only Nisi, Liukoushui Hot Pot Noodle and Jupioca, Related says, with not a single address or suggestion of location. Hudson Related also collects rents from Subway, China One, Fuji East, Piccolo Trattoria and Wholesome Factory.
  • Related thinks Nisi still has “an 11 page menu of diner options.” (Been there lately?) And it gets the opening date wrong, saying “it opened in September 2017.” It was December 4th.
  • RIVAA is not an artists collective nor a gallery in the eyes of Related to whom it pays rent. It is, according to Related, “a museum that is unique to the Island.” Again, no address given, lending credence to the fact that whoever wrote this piffle never set foot here.

You can also quibble that real estate giant Related is so cheap they didn’t invest in a single original photo. Instead, they lifted images from websites, most of which are copyrighted, without suggesting anywhere that they got permission from anyone.

Related’s stupidity about Roosevelt Island is hair-raising in light of the vast sums they collect here each month, but let’s add some juice.

Who became Related’s Director of Regulatory Administration shortly after RIOC silently disappeared her?

None other than former President/CEO Leslie Torres.

Maybe they should have given her a chance to fact check.

Related (no pun intended) stories

Created and published exclusively on Roosevelt Island.

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