When a new hot spot appears for day trips and tourism, there’s always a driving force behind it. In the case of Roosevelt Island, that driving force is Shelton Haynes, CEO of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation. Generally tasked with maintaining and operating parks, roads, sports facilities, public buildings, public transportation, and public safety, Haynes sees a more significant responsibility to the community that has arisen on the two-mile-long island with a population of 12,000: showing the rest of the world what a fantastic place Roosevelt Island is.
Acting at points as home to a prison, insane asylum, quarantine hospital, poorhouse, and similar institutions, Roosevelt Island was crumbling in the late 1960s when it was decided to revitalize the location. Given a problematic task nearly 50 years ago, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation established and slowly grew a small-town community in the middle of New York City – until Shelton Haynes took over as CEO.
Shelton Hayne’s vision for the future
With a solid drive to build the community into something better, Shelton Haynes has overseen many development projects, met with business and tourism leaders to encourage investment in the island, and otherwise worked tirelessly to drive Roosevelt Island into its current place as a hot spot for day trips, tourism, and as a beautiful place to call home. With fields, parks, and riverbanks to explore, the CEO’s dedication to development is well-balanced by his commitment to preserving its history and natural habitat.
The Future of the Riverwalk
Encompassed by the East River with one bridge leading to Queens, the small island has already gained a reputation as a great place to live, providing a small-town atmosphere that is convenient to the city’s heart. Among the projects that Shelton Haynes has inherited and wrapped up include improvements to the local youth center, the FDR Hope Memorial, and countless developments, including the final project in the Riverside development, the Riverside 9 apartment building. “I cannot wait to get shovels in the ground to unveil our latest investment that will continue the tremendous economic boom we are experiencing,” Haynes mentioned in a press release. “Once completed, Riverwalk 9 will spur further job growth, create new housing, and contribute nicely to the beauty of Roosevelt Island.”
Roosevelt Island Operations Corporation Potential
The island is also called home to a 12-acre Cornell Tech campus, which hosts the Graduate Roosevelt Island Hotel and rooftop fine-dining restaurant Anything at All, providing an unprecedented 360-degree view of the Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens skylines. There’s also a sustainably-designed dorm and related structures to keep the operation moving smoothly.
Combined with additional development to come on the island, Shelton Haynes knows that it’s the place to invest in New York City. “With economic development booming, this construction is proof that people want to come to Roosevelt Island, to live, work, and invest in our community,” Haynes mentioned, noting that with everything that’s happening, the island community has a bright future.