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Press Release

NYCEDC, Majority Leader Van Bramer, Borough President Melinda Katz, Local Elected Officials Announce Location Of Long Island City North Ferry Landing

Sep 19 2016

NEW YORK, NY—New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) President Maria Torres-Springer, Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer, Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, State Senator Michael Gianaris, Assemblywoman Catherine Nolan, and Queens Community Board 2 Chair Denise Keehan-Smith, announced that the Citywide Ferry Service ferry landing for Long Island City (LIC) north will be located off of Center Boulevard in Gantry Plaza State Park. The LIC North ferry landing is part of the route which is scheduled to launch next summer.

Upon completing an environmental review and after extensive engagement with residents and elected officials of the LIC community, NYCEDC is in coordination with New York State Parks to site the LIC North ferry landing adjacent to a densely populated residential core. The LIC North ferry landing is projected to have the highest ridership outside of Manhattan, estimated to service approximately 4,000 daily trips.

“Citywide Ferry Service will provide affordable and reliable transit connections to rapidly growing waterfront communities like Long Island City,” said NYCEDC President Maria Torres-Springer. “We’re excited to announce the Long Island City North ferry landing will be in Gantry Plaza State Park, which will provide convenient access for thousands of residents and service nearly 4,000 riders a day – the highest projected ridership outside of Manhattan.”

“The Citywide Ferry is a much-needed service to address some of the transit shortfalls in Queens. The Long Island City landing spot will be a boon for residents and businesses of the fastest growing neighborhood in New York City,” said Queens Borough President Melinda Katz. “Our challenge in government has been to help ensure infrastructure keeps up with demand, and we’re pleased the project is on track to launch next year.”

“Citywide Ferry Service will provide increased transportation options for commuters in Western Queens—and the cost of a boat ride to Midtown or Wall Street will be the same as a trip on the subway,” said Council Majority Leader Jimmy Van Bramer. “All five boroughs will be better connected because of this new initiative. Long Island City is growing rapidly, and its residents need a variety of transportation options. I’m thrilled to announce this location and expand citywide ferry service in our neighborhoods.”

“It is important that every member of our community have access to affordable and reliable transportation,” said State Senator Michael Gianaris. “I look forward to continuing to find new ways to expand our transportation options and offer improved service between boroughs.”

“Community Board 2 would like to thank the EDC as well as our elected officials for bringing the new ferry landing to Long Island City. This ferry landing is a welcome addition to our growing transportation needs and is an excellent alternative for residents and consumers that use our subway and bus lines,” said Queens Community Board 2 Chair Denise Keehan-Smith. “We look forward to working with EDC in the future as they consider additional locations as our population continues to grow. Providing efficient transportation to and from the area is a critical need and we believe this addition is a step in the right direction.”

“Hornblower is excited to bring Citywide Ferry to Gantry Plaza State Park along Long Island City's thriving waterfront,” said Cameron Clark, Senior Vice President and Project Manager for Citywide Ferry. “It's a location offering a great opportunity to establish critical connections to nearby bus and subway lines as we get ready to introduce a new way to Work Live Play throughout New York Harbor 365 days a year, seven days week when we launch next summer.”

The current ferry landing in Hunters Point South will continue to be part of East River Ferry operations until its integration into the larger Citywide Ferry Service network in 2017.

More Details on Citywide Ferry Service

New Jobs: ·

  • Citywide Ferry Service will create at least 155 new jobs in the New York Harbor. ·
  • The crew will earn wages above $15 per hour, along with a comprehensive benefits package. ·
  • Hornblower has a strong history as a strong unionized employer. ·
  • Hornblower will participate in the City’s HireNYC program, which matches qualified applicants from neighborhood-based WorkForce1 training centers.

Routes: ·

  • Rockaway, South Brooklyn and Astoria routes are scheduled to launch in 2017. ·
  • The Rockaway route will connect to the Brooklyn Army Terminal and Wall Street. ·
  • The Astoria route will connect to Astoria, Roosevelt Island (Cornell Tech), Long Island City, East 34th Street and Wall Street. ·
  • The South Brooklyn route will connect Bay Ridge, Brooklyn Army Terminal, Red Hook, Brooklyn Bridge Park’s Pier 1 and Pier 6, and Wall Street, with a connection to Governors Island (launch date TBD). ·
  • The Soundview and Lower East Side routes are to launch in 2018. ·
  • Routes from Coney Island and Stapleton on Staten Island are in planning stages for future expansion. ·
  • The combined routes will cover over 60 miles of waterway. ·
  • Over half a million New Yorkers live within a half-mile of one of the 21 Citywide Ferry landings, including 15,000 families living in NYCHA developments.

Commuting Times: ·

  • Rockaway to Wall Street (1 stop): Approximately 1 hour ·
  • Astoria to E 34th Street (2 stops): Approximately 22 minutes ·
  • Astoria to Wall Street (3 stops): Approximately 38 minutes ·
  • Soundview to Wall Street (2 stops): Approximately 43 minutes ·
  • Bay Ridge to Wall Street (4 stops): Approximately 48 minutes

Pricing: ·

  • The cost per ride will equal that of a single subway ride. ·
  • 4,000 daily East River Ferry customers will see fares reduced from $4 to the cost of a single subway ride. ·
  • The fare will allow for free transfers to any other ferry route within the system, including the East River Ferry. ·
  • Both paper and smartphone ticketing will be available, with payments accepted via cash, credit, or debit card. Discounts will be available for seniors, children and New Yorkers with disabilities. ·
  • Passengers will be allowed to bring bicycles on board for a $1 fee.

The Boats: ·

  • Each boat will be able to carry at least 149 passengers. ·
  • All boats will be equipped with WiFi. ·
  • Boats will be fully accessible to New Yorkers with disabilities, and will comply with the requirements of both the Americans with Disabilities Act and New York City Local Law 68 of 2005. ·
  • New boats will be equipped with the most modern engine design available to reduce emissions and noise, as well as an efficient hull design that will limit wakes and maximize fuel economy. ·
  • The city contract with Hornblower allows the company to charter vessels if necessary to meet the implementation timeline.

City Support: ·

  • The City is investing $55 million in infrastructure upgrades, including building 10 new ferry landings. Barge construction is currently underway at a facility on Staten Island. ·
  • New York City is providing $30 million in operating support per year, over a period of six years. Based on a projection of 4.6 million annual trips, the per-trip subsidy for Citywide Ferry Service will be $6.60, lower than the nearly $8 per trip subsidy on the Long Island Railroad or the nearly $15 per trip subsidy for express buses. City is providing $10 million for additional startup costs, such as vessel upgrades and ticketing machines. ·
  • Potential sponsorships would offset operating costs. ·
  • The City has negotiated an option to acquire at least 18 state-of-the-art, highly efficient passenger ferry vessels, allowing for greater operational flexibility and providing significant savings to taxpayers over the life of the service (roughly up to $5 million per year). -
  • City will receive a portion of fare-box revenue if ridership exceeds 5.6 million passengers.

About NYCEDC
New York City Economic Development Corporation creates shared prosperity across New York City’s five boroughs by strengthening neighborhoods and creating good jobs. NYCEDC works with and for communities to provide them with the resources they need to thrive, and we invest in projects that increase sustainability, support job growth, develop talent, and spark innovation to strengthen the City’s competitive advantage. To learn more about our work and initiatives, please visit us on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.