Brooklynites took to the waters again, as ferry service resumed between the 58th Street Pier in Sunset Park and Wall Street in Manhattan.
The ferry service recommenced on Monday, May 12th, a week after it was announced at the pier – which is located within the Brooklyn Army Terminal – by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn.
The pier is a stop on the new Rockaways to Manhattan route operated by New York Water Taxi that the city is subsidizing through a two-year pilot program. The program is part of a five-borough ferry initiative announced earlier this year, utilizing $1.1 million in councilmanic funding.
Ferry service between 58th Street and Manhattan had been suspended in February because the company was running the service at a loss.
“By riding a ferry instead of climbing into an automobile, those who use the service will be making an important contribution to the effort to make sure New York City remains green, clean and sustainable for years to come,” said Quinn, who was on board the ferry. “I look forward to working with my partners in government and New Yorkers all over the city to make five-borough ferry service a reality.”
State Senator Marty Golden and Borough President Marty Markowitz were on hand to greet riders at 58th Street, as the service resumed.
“ This is a great day for Brooklyn,” remarked Golden, “Since the service was discontinued in February, residents have repeatedly called for such service to be restored.
“With the rising price of gas, with the increase in tolls, and parking, and simply, just due to traffic congestion, taking the waterways, instead of the highways, to work is by the far the better way,” Golden added.
The Rockaways-Sunset Park-Manhattan route is just a down-payment on the city’s new commitment to water-borne transportation. This summer, additional service will be instituted along the East River, from South Williamsburg and Long Island City.
In addition, the city has committed $500,000 to funding a study of potential ferry terminus locations in all five boroughs, including both Bay Ridge and Sheepshead Bay in Brooklyn.