The New York Water Taxi has partnered with Citi Bike to offer a $12/day or $49/week “ultimate commute package” encouraging West Siders to travel by boat and bike.
Helena Durst, President of New York Water Taxi, is also a vice-president and fourth generation member of The Durst Organization, one of the many developers building on Manhattan’s West Side.
Thousands of units are in the pipeline up and down the West Side, and congestion is a big worry of the current residents. Several developments are also coming online downtown and gridlock is a prominent problem.
Earlier this year, Durst launched the pilot ferry service bringing commuters from Pier 84 at 44th Street and 12th Avenue to the Financial District.
Cycling has been a growing mode of transportation in the city, and the partnership links “it represents another step forward in bringing our city’s waterways back into the day-to-day lives of so many New Yorkers,” Durst said.
“Citi Bike is already helping connect New Yorkers with transit, this new partnership makes it even easier to connect with New York Water Taxi,” said Dani Simons, Director of Marketing for New York City Bike Share, operators of Citi Bike. “There are more than 520 miles of waterfront in New York City, and more than 900 miles of bike lanes; we are proud to help connect these two infrastructures and help to make New Yorker’s daily commutes quicker, easier, and more fun.”
Eventually the program will start charging $18/day with volume discounts, according to New York Water Taxi. A specific date has not yet been set.
Pressured to expand, Citi Bike has been looking for additional private investors.
But at $4.50 for a one-way ticket and $8 round trip, the water taxi is not the most affordable of transit options, and for frequent Citi Bike users a $95 annual membership averages out to cents per ride, so it remains to be seen whether the package will be successful. The goal will likely be to get downtown commuters out of cars rather than targeting cyclists and transit users.