Date: Mar 14, 2002
Press Release Number: 18-2002
New Services Scheduled to Begin on March 25
New York Governor George E. Pataki, New Jersey Governor James E. McGreevey and New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg today announced a network of new ferry services that will increase capacity on key cross-Hudson ferry routes by more than 50 percent, dramatically improving commuter access to Lower Manhattan in the wake of the September 11 terrorist attacks.
The increase will bring morning rush-hour capacity on the Lower Manhattan routes to more than 60,000 passengers a day – enough to carry virtually all the passengers who once used the popular World Trade Center PATH station, closed after the complex was destroyed six months ago.
New York Governor Pataki said, \"It is now going to be much easier for tens of thousands of commuters and visitors to get into – and to stay in – Lower Manhattan. These expansions in ferry service will provide immediate improvements for New Yorkers and New Jerseyans alike, as we take another significant step toward rebuilding and restoring Lower Manhattan.\"
New Jersey Governor McGreevey said, \"The expanded ferry service will benefit New Jerseyans by providing increased transportation to Lower Manhattan. Since PATH service was lost on September 11, the demand for regional ferry service has increased substantially. Today’s agreement is essential to our ability to meet this interstate need.\"
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg said, \"In response to the ongoing transportation concerns of Lower Manhattan employees and residents, a bi-state, multi-agency task force was convened to create new ferry service and address the difficulties in traveling to and around Lower Manhattan. As a result of that collaboration, we were able to increase ferry service in record time and provide employees and residents of Lower Manhattan as well as visitors with a wonderful, fast and convenient option for getting around downtown.\"
New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver said, \"Additional ferry service between Lower Manhattan and New Jersey will benefit both commuters and residents by helping to address immediate transportation needs while long-term transportation infrastructure issues are examined and resolved. This new service is yet another important symbol that the residential and commercial communities of Lower Manhattan will not only survive but thrive.\"
Port Authority Chairman Jack G. Sinagra said, \"Since the September 11 attacks, the Port Authority has used its financial and technical muscle to begin to rebuild Lower Manhattan’s transportation infrastructure. We pledged to invest more than $500 million to restore PATH service to the area and spent $4 million to build a new ferry terminal at Pier A in Lower Manhattan. In addition, we invested another $5 million to dredge and upgrade ferry slips at Hoboken Terminal to allow for increased service to operate from that facility. We have also aggressively supported the new plans announced today.\"
Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, \"PATH has always been a key cog in Lower Manhattan’s transportation network. When that service was knocked out, the Port Authority immediately began work to find PATH commuters other ways to get to and from work until the system is rebuilt. Our continuing efforts to enhance ferry service will provide immediate relief for thousands of people who have suffered through longer commutes since September 11.\"
New York Waterway President Arthur Imperatore said, \"Governors Pataki and McGreevey and Mayor Bloomberg understand that the Hudson River is a highway that unites us rather than divides us. New York and New Jersey share this waterway. With the help of our elected leaders and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, NY Waterway will carry thousands of new commuters to work and continue our efforts to help rebuild Lower Manhattan and our entire region.\"
Timothy Carey, President and CEO of the Hugh L. Carey Battery Park City Authority, said, \"Increased public transportation options are always good news for commuters, and this new ferry link between Wall Street and the World Financial Center is another positive step toward the recovery of the downtown area. I would like to commend Mayor Bloomberg and both Governors Pataki and McGreevey for working together to allow NY Waterway to run this shuttle from Pier 11 to the Port Authority pier at the World Financial Center.\"
Robert P. Balachandran, President and CEO of the Hudson River Park Trust, said, \"As the home of much of the West Side’s current ferry service, the Hudson River Park is poised to play an expanding role as these services increase. The increased access to the West Side waterfront provided within the Hudson River Park project neatly coincides with the need for improved waterborne transportation.\"
FEMA Regional Director Joe Picciano said, \"We are pleased that FEMA is able to support the City in implementing transportation solutions to help bring the city back to normalcy. We will continue to work with the city, New York State and New Jersey to facilitate the recovery of the region.\"
NY Waterway, which is chartering eight additional ferries and hiring up to 100 additional employees, will begin operating the new services on March 25. They include more frequent service from the Hoboken Rail Terminal to the World Financial Center, a new route between the Hoboken Rail Terminal and Pier 11 on the East River at Wall Street, and a free water shuttle to carry commuters between the World Financial Center on the Hudson River and Pier 11 on the East River.
The expansion of ferry service in the New York-New Jersey region involves two new services and the expansion of an existing one: