A new shuttle service is delivering tourists to City Island.
Thanks to the City Island Chamber of Commerce, the new trolley service will bring individuals who visit the Bronx out to City Island to enjoy all its amenities.
The service, named the City Island Land Ferry, was started after Skip Giacco, president of the CACC, along with his wife Louise, visited Sanford, FL in 2012 when they noticed a car train transporting vehicles.
This gave them the idea to start a shuttle service to connect the mainland of the Bronx to City Island, giving residents an opportunity to enjoy City Island’s many restaurants, shops and other attractions.
The project started with the chamber’s acqusition of an 18-passenger school bus, which was donated by a local school bus company.
The bus was then customized to resemble an old-fashioned trolly. Oak wood trim was added to the exterior of the bus to resemble the feel of wooden ships, which were constructed on City Island during an earlier time.
Currently, the trolley service, which began three weeks ago, is picking up passengers from the Marriott Residence Inn at the Metro Center Atrium on Tuesdays at 5 p.m.
The shuttle service runs until about 10 p.m., taking the visitors back and forth to an area of the Bronx that would be extremely difficult to travel to otherwise, allowing them to enjoy some of City Island’s well known restaurants, including Sammy’s, Artie’s Steak & Seafood, The Original Crab Shanty and Seashore.
Many of the passengers are from out of state.
“This is a great opportunity for those who are visiting in the Bronx and have always wanted to visit and explore City Island,” said Giacco, president of the City Island Chamber of Commerce and founder of the City Island Land Ferry. “City Island is rather isolated compared to the rest of the borough, so this shuttle service is a chance for visitors to enjoy its restaurants as well as its shops. This is very exciting – because it’s a service that is just starting and has huge potential.”
Giacco, wants to extend the shuttle’s schedule beyond Tuesdays nights, and is in discussions with other hotels as well, and with Jacobi Hospital, hoping to have the shuttle service pick up from those areas.
He lauded praise on Maria Caruso, a CICC board member and co-owner of SK Bistro, a French restaurant located on City Island, who helped with the bus donation.
“Maria was truly instrumental in assisting us,” said Giacco. “She was a really big help in getting this project off of the ground.”