Soundview Ferry: locals support 34th Street stop

Ferry landings like this one will be built around the city, includingin Soundview, according to the NYC Economic Development Corporation.
Photo courtesy of NYC EDC

The public can now take a peek at the planned landings for the new Soundview to Manhattan ferry.

The NYC Economic Development Corporation recently released renderings of the 35 by 90 foot ferry docks for its new landings, including the Soundview ferry that’s planned for Pugsley Creek Park.

The Soundview ferry plan calls for stops at East 90th Street, East 62nd Street and Wall Street in Manhattan.

It has received a great deal of community support, with the only concerns being the limited parking around the landing and the lack of an East 34th Street stop.

Councilwoman Annabel Palma raised concerns about an East 34th Street stop on the ferry, which EDC estimates will take passengers from Soundview to Wall Street in around 43 minutes.

“This is the most pressing issue, as it could severely compromise the efficacy of the ferry service for a considerable number of my constituents,” stated Palma of an East 34th Street stop.

That location is already a hub for existing ferry routes, said Nellie Santiago-Rivera, secretary of the board at Shorehaven Homeowners Association, Inc.

But an EDC spokesman indicated that their research suggests that the planned route works.

“We performed a detailed analysis of all our routes and landings, and determined that there is significantly greater demand for improved travel times from Soundview to lower Manhattan than to midtown,” the spokesman stated. “Adding additional stops also makes overall travel time longer for riders, which would make the ferry less of an improvement over existing modes of transit and reduce ridership.”

The councilwoman stated that the ferry landings themselves were both elegant and efficient, based on the renderings.

Palma expressed concern about whether parking spaces will be allotted to accommodate commuters who expect to drive to the Soundview terminal.

The EDC spokesman stated that the agency believes the majority of ferry riders will not reach the landing by automobile.

William Rivera, Community Board 9 district manager, said that the board is advocating for adding a bus stop near the ferry.

At the 700 plus unit Shorehaven complex, the top concern is the effect the ferry will have on available street parking, said Santiago-Rivera.

“Parking is the major concern of the homeowners here,” she said.

Rivera said that he is in communication with EDC about the community concerns, and said that the ferry is not designed for people to drive to, but for those who take the bus and who live nearby.

“The community board for the past two years has been very involved in the ferry discussions,” said Rivera, who added the board has received a Metropolitan Water Alliance award. “For the most part, the majority of the residents are in support of the ferry.”

CB 9 will continue to press for better lighting and amenities, said Rivera.

“Right now, as district manager, I want to stay in the loop with EDC, and make sure the (community) concerns are always on the radar,” said Rivera.

The Soundview ferry is scheduled to open in 2018.

Reach Reporter Patrick Rocchio at (718) 260–4597. E-mail him at procchio@cnglocal.com. Follow him on Twitter @patrickfrocchio.
An artist rendering of an entrance to the ferry landings that according to the NYC Economic Development Corp are now being fabricated for several stops around the city, including for a stop in Soundview.
Photo courtesy of NYC EDC

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