This morning, the first boat along the new NYC Ferry Astoria route launched at 6:30 AM from Hallet’s Cove at 3-10 Astoria Blvd, making stops at Roosevelt Island, Gantry State Plaza in Long Island City, and East 34th Street. The route itself continues to Wall Street where connections to the East River Ferry route, South Brooklyn and Rockaway route are possible. 34th Street also has a connection to the East River Ferry route with stops in Hunters Point South, Greenpoint, north and south Williamsburg, and DUMBO. Next year, the ferry route from Soundview in the Bronx to Wall Street will launch, as well as the Lower East Side route.

NYC Ferry boat departing Astoria on new route this morning. Photo courtesy NYCEDC.

The NYCEDC also announced this week that the NYC Ferry received a 93% approval rating in a survey of over 1,300 riders. According to the press release:

The survey found that across all three active routes (East River, South Brooklyn, and Rockaway), 93% of riders gave NYC Ferry a customer satisfaction rating of seven or higher on a ten-point scale, with 66% giving the highest possible score. Findings also show that 87% of riders are New York City residents, with 85% of weekend riders and 90% of peak-hour riders residing in the five boroughs.

The survey also revealed that over half of the riders use the mobile app to make ticket purchases, with 63% of all riders doing so during peak hours. In addition, more than half (53%) of peak riders use the ferry regularly, defined as 4+ times per week. The majority of off-peak riders, 73%, are trying the ferry for the first time or are occasional users.

Mayor Bill de Blasio and community leaders at launch of NYC Ferry’s Astoria route. Photo courtesy NYCEDC.

Responding to high demand, NYC Ferry announced additional capacity for three of the fleet’s twenty boats. The new boats which have not yet launched will have a capacity of 250 passengers, compared to 149 with the current boats. In addition, a 56,000 square foot maintenance and storage facility is being constructed at the Brooklyn Navy Yard with a predicted opening of early 2018.

Next, check out the 10 Fun Facts about the NYC Ferry and check out 15 Must Visit Places in Astoria.