NEW YORK—After the hurricane destroyed hundreds of feet of aboveground subway track that usually serves as the main public transit artery out of the Rockaway Peninsula, many have been stranded there.
Now a weekday ferry will run from the peninsula, which is off the east Brooklyn coast and south of JFK Airport, to Manhattan, making stops at Pier 11/Wall Street and East 34th Street.
“I am very glad to see that the Far Rockaway ferry service is about to be restored and that some degree of normality is about to return to the lives of Rockaway residents,” said Councilman James Sanders Jr. in a statement. “Come Monday, Rockaway residents who work in Manhattan will be able to reliably get to work again, and those who wish to get off the peninsula for the time being will have another route out.”
A ferry on the same route operated beginning in 2008 through a city-led pilot program.
But the last ferry ran on June 30, 2010, when the subsidy ran out, according to a letter from Tom Fox, founder of New York Water Taxi, to the riders.
Yet with the A line subway track connecting the mainland and the peninsula expected to remain out of service for several months, the temporary ferry service is being hailed as a vital transportation link. The ferries will serve thousands of New Yorkers, according to Seth Pinsky, president of the New York Economic Development Corporation.
Seastreak, a private ferry company is running the new Rockaway ferry service.
Fares are $2 one-way. The weekday-only service starts from a temporary landing at Beach 108th Street and Beach Channel Drive at 5:45 a.m. for a 50-minute ride to Pier 11/Wall Street.
Service from Pier 11/Wall Street to the Rockaways begins at 6:35 a.m. for a 70-minute ride. See a full schedule here.
Meanwhile, the A line subway service was extended to Howard Beach/JFK Airport on Sunday. A shuttle bus takes riders from that station to the Mott Avenue—Far Rockaway Station. However, a trip to Manhattan still takes more than an hour from the peninsula.
The section between Howard Beach/JFK Airport and the Rockaway Peninsula, including the North Channel Bridge over Jamaica Bay and a section of Broad Channel, was severely damaged. Some of the rails are twisted and in some areas supporting roadbed is completely washed away, according to the MTA.
NJ to Manhattan Ferry Service Starts Monday
A new temporary ferry service will begin from Hoboken, N.J., to Manhattan Monday, in another area where people have been having transit troubles since the hurricane.
While two more portions of the PATH network are opening Monday, some stations remain closed because of heavy flood damage. Port authority officials said passengers may have extended waits and delays.
Besides recommending riders buy SmartLink cards and add trips before arriving at the stations Monday, officials are opening the new ferry service, between Hoboken Ferry Terminal and Pier 79 at East 39th Street in Manhattan as a transit alternative.
The fare is $5 one-way and the ferries will run on weekdays between 6 a.m. and 10 a.m. and from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.
Also, free shuttle buses will be available from Pier 79 to Midtown Manhattan.
New York Waterway, which is operating the route, also has ferries running from Liberty Harbor (accessible from the Marin Boulevard light rail stop), Paulus Hook, and Jersey City.
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