Citywide Ferry Service to launch Rockaway route first this summer

The Rockaway route will be the first Citywide Ferry Service to hit the water, with a launch coming on schedule this June.

But the other two routes coming on line in the first phase of service — South Brooklyn and Astoria — won’t get going until later in the summer, according to the New York City Economic Development Corporation, which is overseeing the network.

A spokesman for the EDC, Anthony Hogrebe, said in an email that Rockaway will get the first service since the area has “among the longest commute times in the city, and so we made a commitment to that community that they would be the first to get the new service.” The route features a stop at the Brooklyn Army Terminal in between Rockaway, Queens and Wall Street/Pier 11 in Manhattan.

The first boat is already en route for testing and is scheduled to arrive in April. City second-graders are diligently researching names for the new boats (in the running: “Lunchbox” and “Friendship Express”).

When service does launch, rides will cost $2.75, but fares won’t be integrated with the MTA’s fare payment model—meaning that riders won’t get a free transfer from boat to subway.

Each vessel will have free Wi-Fi, USB charging stations and a concession stand stocked with beer. The first phase of service will launch the Rockaway, Astoria and South Brooklyn routes.

The second phase will bring another two routes online, the Soundview and Lower East Side, and will launch in 2018.