Thursday, November 5, 2015

Roosevelt Island Ferry Service Really Coming In 2017 Says NYC Economic Development Corporation At RIRA Meeting Last Night - Sorry, But No Wine Bar Included

The NYC Economic Development Corp (NYC EDC) presented its plan for the upcoming City Wide Ferry Service to the Roosevelt Island community at last night's joint meeting of the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) and Community Board 8's Roosevelt Island committee.

Image From November 4 NYC EDC Roosevelt Island Presentation

According to the NYC EDC:
The New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) is working with the Office of Mayor de Blasio to launch the Citywide Ferry Service. The service will consist of five new ferry routes in addition to the existing East River Ferry service, charging a fare of $2.75. The service will further the Mayor's goals of:
  • providing affordable and convenient transit for communities with limited transportation options;
  • supporting growing neighborhoods;
  • and increasing the resiliency and redundancy of our city's transportation network.
When the Citywide Ferry Service is fully operational in 2018, the six routes will carry an estimated 4.6 million trips per year. Building on several years of ferry planning and operations experience, NYCEDC is leading the project by building ten new ferry landings, renovating six others, and selecting operator(s) to run the service....
The NYC EDC plan includes ferry service to Roosevelt Island on a route from Astoria - Roosevelt Island - Long Island City - East 34th Street to Wall Street starting in 2017. The fare will be $2.75 with free transfer to other ferry routes but Metro Cards will not be accepted nor will there be free transfer between the ferry and MTA subway or bus system.

The route and length of trip is pictured below.

Image From Jeanmarie Evelly

The City Wide Ferry Service August 12 NYC EDC Draft Scope Of Work (Page 7) reports:
... The proposed Roosevelt Island landing would be located on the eastern side of the island immediately to the north of the Ed Koch Queensboro Bridge (see Figure 6). The proposed landing site is a dock that was formerly used primarily for delivery of oil shipments to the island controlled by the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation (RIOC). Access to the site is provided by East Main Street, which runs adjacent to the dock and includes a sidewalk on the eastern side of the roadway. Access is also available from the waterfront esplanade that runs to the north and south of the dock, which connects to the East Main Street sidewalk. The landing would be located in a residential (R7-2) zoning district. Transit service is provided by the Q102 bus and an intra-island bus service, which both run along East Main Street. This dock would be improved or partially removed as a result of the proposed project, and a new barge and gangway would be constructed to establish the ferry landing. No upland circulation improvements are anticipated at the site, although improvements to the dock would likely be necessary to facilitate pedestrian flow between the gangway and East Main Street....
Image From November 4 NYC EDC Roosevelt Island Presentation

Roosevelt Island Oil Dock Potential Location For New Ferry Dock

Image From November 4 NYC EDC Roosevelt Island Presentation

Here's the November 4 NYC EDC Citywide Roosevelt Island Ferry Presentation.

Part 1- NYC EDC's Justine Johnson and James Wong provide an overview of the NYC Ferry Service system and plan for Roosevelt Island route.

Part 2 - NYC EDC representatives answer questions from the public including:
  • types of ferry vessels to be used given the strong East River currents,
  • traffic impact analysis on Ferry Service for Roosevelt Island (no parking lot or structure contemplated for ferry landing),
  • reduced pricing for Seniors (not yet determined)
  • access for wheelchairs, strollers and bicycles (yes),
  • ferry schedule (2 to 3 vessels per hour, each vessel holds 149 passengers).

Part 3 - NYC EDC representatives answer questions from RIRA and Community Board 8 members including:
  • Any impediments to bringing ferry service to Roosevelt Island, (not at moment, moving full speed ahead, currently preparing environmental review statements and permits),
  • shelter for people waiting outside for ferry - (canopies and wind screens,no heat lamps),
  • safety of oil dock itself (divers were in water yesterday evaluating oil dock. Gangway will be used over oil dock to get passengers to the ferry barge, no plan to rehab oil dock at this point),
  • will a wine bar be included during the afternoon and evening run ( at 4 minute 20 second mark, good idea but no, much laughter),
  • will a Red Bus stop at ferry landing,
  • will Cornell Tech $500 Thousand annual five year operating subsidy be in addition to or included in NYC operating ferry subsidies (not prepared to answer yet),
  • why doesn't Roosevelt Island route include stop at Hunters Point South to make travel to Brooklyn easier (Hunters Point ferry stop cannot accommodate additional ferry landings than currently being used),
  • free ferry transfer to other ferry routes but no Metro Cards or free transfer to MTA subway and bus and
  • Can the Roosevelt Island route Ferry be named Minnehanock (original name for Roosevelt Island)?

The NYC EDC has more info the Citywide Ferry Service including the August 2015 Draft Scope of Work for a Draft Environmental Impact Statement and the 2013 Citywide Ferry Study which projected 405 daily Roosevelt Island F train subway station boarding diversions

Image From 2013 Citywide Ferry Study (Page 21)

assuming Roosevelt Island ferry service at a $2.75 ferry fare.

Here comes the Roosevelt Island Ferry in 2017.