Archive for February, 2015|Monthly archive page

River Dell Students Get First-Hand Career Insight

Clear day and clear view of the project site/NNYB Outreach

Clear day and clear view of the project site/NNYB Outreach

Two chilly weeks ago juniors and seniors from River Dell High School visited the Tarrytown viewing area and learned about the various co-op and career choices — from compliance to finance, architecture to engineering — available with the bridge project.

Students met landscape architect Rebecca Nolan, Community Relations Specialist Dan Marcy, Diversity Compliance Manager Tracey Mitchell, environmental engineer Chris Coccaro, materials engineer Brian Cresenzi, and construction manager Will Torres, PE. Teacher who attended were pleased that professionals from varied careers offered their time and insight.

Applying his finance background to educational outreach: Community Relations Specialist Dan Marcy/NNYB Outreach

Applying his finance background to educational outreach: Community Relations Specialist Dan Marcy/NNYB Outreach

“They took a lot from the presentations and were interested in knowing about the different jobs and what they involve,” principal Lorraine Brooks said. “These kids will continue their education beyond high school — some pursuing trades — and it’s helpful for them to see specifics and get real-world knowledge” about the responsibilities associated with jobs that interest them.

More project engineers were at this presentation, Brooks said, and “teachers reported back they, too, learned a lot.”

What impressed Brooks most was the Outreach Team’s effort to go out of its way — during this visit and last December — to ensure students understood the presentations and that communications matched students’ comprehension levels. “They listened to us and made the kids feel special. It was important to the speakers that we understood them,” she said.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2015

Two Months Later: Batch Plant Update

concreteThere’s a portable concrete batch plant available for a few more hours on eBay. How do I know? I added it to my Watch List two months ago when I first wrote about shopping online and waited for a reply from Tappan Zee Constructors, LLC (TZC) spokeswoman Carla Julian.

TZC President Darrell Waters issued a statement several days after the December 16 accident.

“We are in the process of determining exactly what happened and why,” Waters said. The investigation is expected to take several weeks, he said, at which time the public will be informed.

As the investigation, and the project, continue, “Safety and environmental stewardship are our top priorities,” he said.

Waters emphasized, “If or when an incident occurs, no matter what the size, we will always use it as an opportunity to review and reassess our safety procedures and operations specific to the project.”

I asked Julian on January 20 for an update and was told TZC will have an update in the upcoming weeks as it finalizes its investigation, and I will receive it when TZC issues it.

One month later (February 16) I again requested an update. Julian told me when she issues the next update, then I will receive it. I asked when. No reply.

This week, however, I learned from another news outlet that the team would soon issue an update. Is Julian selectively dispersing information?

Back to the batch plant for sale.

Several people are watching the one with few sale hours remaining; it’s available only to local pick-ups. Interestingly, last week I received an email from one company I wrote about in December, reminding me one of its mobile machines is ready for shipment at a special price.

I’ll pass. Julian did say she’d issue an update, right?

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2015

Tower Crane Challenge? Bring It On!

Outreach Specialist Ishmael Mejia overseeing the Tower Crane Challenge/© Janie Rosman 2015

Outreach Specialist Ishmael Mejia overseeing the Tower Crane Challenge/© Janie Rosman 2015

After reading the New NY Bridge tweets about the Tower Crane Challenge, I decided to try my hand. It requires participants to place the tiny construction crew member on the target using the crane’s controls.

Since I was in the neighborhood I stopped by the Tarrytown Outreach Center. That it was more than 30 degrees warmer than yesterday, and the past few weeks, made it feel like spring. I saw a few people wearing jeans and sweatshirts, no coats. It felt (dare I say it?) warm outside.

* * * * *

Outreach Specialist Ishmael Mejia explained the rules and arranged the target, attached the hook to the figure and hoisted it to a specified height above the target. Ready, Set, GO!

Having fun while learning how cranes work/NNYB Outreach

Having fun while learning how cranes work/NNYB Outreach

It took a minute to figure out which controls moved the crane in what direction. Mejia did explain them carefully; I had to see how they worked for myself to understand them. Within minutes the figure landed right on target.

While it’s a game and a test of skills, the Tower Crane Challenge is one aspect of the Outreach Team’s overall approach to involving the community and opening avenues for students who might consider engineering careers.

poster

Each of the main span towers — you can see them starting at 1:05 in the “Project Year 2014 in Two Minutes” video — will be constructed with its own crane, four in all.

Ready to take the Challenge and get your free poster? While you’re at the Outreach Center check out bridge art from the summer show, Safety Sam’s unnamed counterpart and “Project at a Glance” and “Safety Sam” information panels.

And that tiny piece of rebar on the table? It’s much heavier than it looks.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2015

Here’s What Happened Six Months Ago Today . . .

The Outreach Centers were being readied for the upcoming bridge art show; a few pieces of art remain in Tarrytown and in Nyack.

Also this week: another project milestone, the start of pile cap installation.

* * * * *

Arts in the region “brings us closer to our neighbors on the other side of the bridge,” ArtsWestchester CEO Janet Langsam said. “Artists love to draw the bridge: it’s symbolic of connections and metaphorically working together.”

"Tappan Zee Bridge and Lighthouse"/© Ylli Haruni

“Tappan Zee Bridge and Lighthouse”/© Ylli Haruni

Beautiful and intriguing, the scenery has long been a subject for artists; though it’s changing, fascination continues.

As a way to link the bridge project to creative populations in Nyack and Tarrytown, officials invited painters photographers and sculptors to send their interpretations of the three-mile span — new design or current — to the 2014 Bridge Art Show, a collaboration with ArtsWestchester, Rockland Center for the Arts, Rivertown Artists Workshop, and Nyack Art Collective.

“This is a nice way to join the Westchester and Rockland arts communities,” RoCA Executive Director Julianne Ramos agreed. “Artists appreciate the opportunity to say they were in a show, and have their work recognized.”

The response was overwhelmingly positive.

Foggy night, Tappan Zee Bridge/ ©2011 Ali Perretz

Foggy night, Tappan Zee Bridge/ ©2011 Ali Perretz

Photography, paintings — watercolor, oil, acrylic — and sculpture: 52 entries from Westchester and Rockland Counties, two from Connecticut, one from Pennsylvania, and one from New York City were submitted electronically within two months. A few people inquired after the final date (July 31) if they missed the deadline, which indicates the enthusiasm and interest in very idea.

All submissions were reviewed and accepted; artists received congratulatory letters asking them to bring their display-ready work to the Community Outreach Centers by August 24. The project’s Visual Quality Panel — including RoCA Board of Directors President Robert L. Fellows — will review all entries and select a Best of Show and two runners-up.

“Art is your interpretation. I see things as I believe other people see them, NAC member Ken Burns said. “It’s a creative idea to have this show, and I feel people will be interested in seeing it.”

Encaustic painting: "Rainy Afternoon on the Tappan Zee Bridge"/© Heather Leigh Douglas, 2012

Encaustic painting: “Rainy Afternoon on the Tappan Zee Bridge”/© Heather Leigh Douglas, 2012

Engaging and connecting neighbors, comparing and appreciating how they see a shared focus.

The original idea was to display work from Westchester artists in Rockland, and
vice versa, to stimulate a connection between them, to promote economic development, and to open horizons for each to visit the other’s county.

RAW Co-Director/Founder Naomi Vladeck felt the group’s establishment in the Sleepy Hollow cultural community is a bonus. RAW advocates for local artists to demonstrate their performance work, “(And) we’ve met a lot of visual artists doing that,” she said.

“Collaborating with local arts groups helped link the New NY Bridge project directly to the extremely talented artist community here in the Hudson Valley, and create even more excitement and interest in this historic project. The 2014 Bridge Art Show has proven to be extremely popular and we look forward to displaying the 50-plus submissions at our Community Outreach Centers in Nyack and Tarrytown next month.” — Brian Conybeare, Special Project Advisor to Governor Andrew Cuomo

Get ready for a post-Labor Day grand opening of a unique show that will run for two months at 142 Main St., Nyack, and at 303 S. Broadway, Tarrytown. Both Centers are open Monday to Friday, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Psst. Word has it a book sculpture of the bridge was especially created for this show. Which one? We’ll have to wait and see.

These Hudson Valley artists might spark a memory or two, or show you a new vision, or the familiar in a new light. And who knows? Perhaps this show will set a precedent. All art is for sale, too, so if a specific work catches your eye, say so.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2014

You Can Detect a Lot from What is Not Said

If you asked me to describe South Nyack Mayor Bonnie Christian in one word, then I’d say consistent. At least she’s consistent.

Christian has consistently denied that the option presented to residents last year was the only option, and she has consistently ignored my phone calls and emails.

She speaks when it suits her as she did in November, standing in front of Village Hall and blasting the state, and as she’ll do next Tuesday during a community meeting, her first since last March, to discuss the shared use path terminus.

I’ll be listening intently to what she says when the South Nyack Board of Trustees and the TZ Bridge Task Force hear residents’ comments and concerns.

Last Friday was the deadline for sending comments to the state. Christian asked residents to please copy her on all correspondence to Special Project Advisor Brian Conybeare.

It’s healthy and necessary for people to express their thoughts and to have their voices heard. That said, where does South Nyack go from here? Maybe some answers will present themselves next week.

The meeting will be held at Living Christ Church, 151 S. Broadway, at 6:30 p.m. Doors open at 6 pm.

I’d like to know what you think.

Copyright © Janie Rosman and Kaleidoscope Eyes 2015

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