Ferry Good: Riders Praise New Public Transit Option

Ferry Good: Riders Praise New Public Transit Option

Photo Courtesy of Ed Reed/Mayoral Approval Office

The City launched NYC Ferry’s Astoria Route this week.

By Forum Staff
A City Economic Development Corporation survey of more than 1,300 customers found that across all three active routes – Rockaway, East River, and South Brooklyn – 93 percent of riders gave NYC Ferry a satisfaction rating of 7 or higher on a 10-point scale, with 66 percent giving the highest possible score, NYCEDC announced on Friday.
In an effort to better understand ridership patterns and preferences, NYCEDC said it crafted survey questions to gauge customer satisfaction, demographic information, and usage patterns. Key findings of the survey include:
Rider Satisfaction: 93 percent of riders gave NYC Ferry a satisfaction rating of 7 or higher.
• 66 percent gave NYC Ferry a rating of 10.
• 11 percent gave it a rating of 9.
• 11 percent gave it a rating of 8.
• 4 percent gave it a rating of 7.
The Economic Development Corporation indicated that its staff distributed surveys to riders aboard NYC Ferry vessels and collected responses as passengers disembarked. Responses were collected on all active routes over two weekends and eight weekdays during five time blocks: weekday morning, mid-day, and evening, and weekend morning and afternoon. Findings are based on 1,345 total responses.
The city launched the sea-faring public transit option in May, one month ahead of schedule. Mayor Bill de Blasio and borough elected officials celebrated the grand opening of the first two routes with a ceremonial first ride from the Rockaways to Manhattan.
“We’re excited that after less than four months, the vast majority of riders have had a positive experience with NYC Ferry,” said NYCEDC President and CEO James Patchett. “We’re also seeing the service meeting our goal of supporting commuters around the five boroughs.”
Last week, NYCEDC released the NYC Ferry Astoria Route schedule, the final route to launch in 2017. Starting Tuesday at 6:30 a.m., the new route began to make stops at Astoria, Roosevelt Island, Long Island City, East 34th Street in Midtown Manhattan, and Wall Street’s Pier 11. Astoria Route passengers will also be able to transfer to all other NYC Ferry routes at East 34th Street and Pier 11, NYCEDC noted.
The opening of the Astoria Route follows the launches of the Rockaway and South Brooklyn Routes, and the integration of the East River Route. Combined, the routes have served over 1.4 million riders to date, according to the corporation.
Once the NYC Ferry system is fully operational, the combined routes will cover more than 60 miles of waterway at $2.75 per ride, the same cost of a subway ride, and the cost of a 30-day unlimited ferry pass will be $121, mirroring the cost of a 30-day MetroCard. The two final routes, Lower East Side and Soundview, will launch next year.
And due to high demand, NYC Ferry, which is operated by Hornblower, recently announced that it will be adding capacity to three of its 20 boats. These new vessels will be outfitted with larger engines and a capacity of up to 250 passengers. The other 17 boats each can hold up to 149 passengers.

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