New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio is planning to further expand the NYC Ferry service. He says it has far exceeded annual ridership expectations.
“We thought the most we could possibly see with the existing lines was about 4.5 million riders a year. Now we have a new projection. In just a few years, that number will double to 9 million a year.”
De Blasio wants to invest $300 million in capital funding into NYC Ferry over the next five years.
“We’re going to be doubling the size of our fleet. There’s going to be a lot more of the bigger boats to get a lot more people to where they’re going, to reduce the waits, reduce the lines. We also are going to be improving the piers and the docks to make sure people can get on and off of the boats more easily.”
Two more ferry service routes, one from the Bronx, one from Manhattans Lower East Side are expected to begin operating before summer’s end. De Blasio believes NYC Ferry has helped relieve congestion on the city’s crowded roads and subways.
“How are we not taking advantage of all that is around us, our waterways. This is key to the future of New Yorkers being able to get around more easily.”
De Blasio is hoping to eventually implement a cross transportation system between NYC Ferry and the MTA.