Coney Island residents and business leaders are looking forward next summer — not for the waves or rides, but for a long sought-after ferry service.
The Alliance for Coney Island rallied with residents and business owners Wednesday morning, calling on the city to bring the waterborne transit service to their community as soon as possible. Alexandra Silversmith, the executive director for the nonprofit, said the area was originally included in the city’s ferry plans but was dropped before last year’s launch. Since then, there have been few updates regarding a Coney Island stop from the city’s Economic Development Corporation, which oversees the ferry service, according to Silversmith.
“While most of Brooklyn’s waterfront has ferry service, we have been overlooked,” she said.
Several residents said bus and subway service in Coney Island has been in steady decline, adding even more time to their already lengthy commutes. Kumali Zairee, a Coney Island resident of more than 40 years, said it takes her more than an hour on a crowded train to get to downtown Manhattan.
“The transportation service is not that great and the community is getting bigger every day,” she said.
Silversmith said no location for a dock has been identified, but she and other business leaders welcomed any study into sites. Last month, EDC launched an online feasibility study that sought public input on new ferry stops, and Silversmith encouraged Coney Islanders to keep pushing.
The EDC has expressed openness to hearing from the Coney Island community.
“We’re excited to take another look at Coney Island as part of the ongoing feasibility study and welcome Coney Islanders to make their voices heard,” EDC spokeswoman Stephanie Báez said in a statement.