July 26, By Nathaly Pesantez
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the start of a long anticipated ferry route connecting Astoria and Long Island City to Manhattan today.
The Astoria line will be in operation beginning Tuesday, August 29, the week before Labor Day weekend.
The mayor was joined by city officials and residents of the area at the Hunters Point South Ferry Landing in Long Island City for the announcement.
“This is all about creating more access around the city,” Mayor de Blasio said.
“The announcement of a new ferry route connecting Astoria, Long Island City, Roosevelt Island, and Manhattan and added capacity to existing boats that service Western Queens is welcome news that I hope will alleviate overcrowding to better serve my constituents,” councilmember Jimmy Van Bramer said in a statement.
The mayor also announced that the NYC Ferry hit one million riders today from its launch three months ago—to celebrate, riders who activate a ticket on the NYC Ferry app between July 21 and July 28 will be entered to win a free annual pass.
The NYC Ferry will also celebrate by offer half price draft beverages—coffee, beer, and wine—today on all vessels with concessions.
The mayor also announced that forthcoming NYC Ferry vessels will be bigger in size.
“As a result of already seeing just these first few months of success to increase the size of the boats that are coming into production,” de Blasio said. “Each of these boats will be increased by 67 percent in terms of their capacity.”
The larger ferries will hold up to 249 passengers, compared to 149 seats on standard boats.
The new route will be the fourth one in the NYC Ferry system, and it will connect Astoria at the Hallets Cove dock to Roosevelt Island, to Long Island City at Gantry Plaza, to East 34th Street in Manhattan, and down to Wall Street.
The East River route already in place with a stop at Hunters Point South Park will be unchanged.
The Astoria route is expected to take about 38 minutes from start to end.
A one-way ticket for adults costs $2.75.