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Mayor Bill de Blasio and DOT Commissioner Trottenberg Announce Expansion of Staten Island Ferry Service

April 1, 2015

“We’re committed to bringing better transit and opportunity to parts of the city that have long gone underserved. The Staten Island Ferry is the lifeline for an entire borough. Setting a 30-minute standard for service will help Staten Islanders work, grow businesses on the island, and bring us closer to a day when every New Yorker has access to frequent, reliable public transit,” said Mayor Bill de Blasio. “Starting next month, we will begin increasing service on the Staten Island Ferry on weekends in the morning and overnight. And we will put forward funding in our executive budget to reach full 30-minute service, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.”

“We are pleased to announce that beginning on May 1, we will begin expanded overnight service on the Staten Island Ferry, adding six round trips per week, one each on Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights and three on Sunday morning. This Administration is committed to providing 30 minute service, 24/7, to the 22 million annual ferry riders and 470,000 Staten Islanders – which helps provide transportation equity for the borough. Moving forward, we will be working expeditiously in the coming months to finalize the best option for the full 30-minute overnight service for ferry riders,” said NYC Transportation Commissioner Polly Trottenberg.

“This decision was so critically important, not just on the substance of increasing ferry service in order to provide Staten Islanders a viable and consistent mass transit option to come and go as work and life demand; not just to further unleash the economic development potential of the North Shore, but also because it speaks to the relationship the de Blasio Administration has with the people of Staten Island. I, and others, have provided the Mayor with a blueprint for helping Staten Island, and this is a great demonstration of communication, collaboration and commitment,” said Staten Island Borough President James Oddo. “The Mayor and Administration asked me to be patient during this process. Patience is not my strong suit. But, this decision underscores what I believe to be the core of the matter – that Mayor de Blasio and I absolutely can collectively do right by this borough and city and help improve people’s lives. Bravo to him and his team, particularly Commissioner Trottenberg. I remain ready to continue working together on many other issues important to Staten Islanders. So, in the words of Josiah Bartlet, ‘What’s next?’”

In a joint statement, Council Members Vincent Ignizio, Steven Matteo and Deborah Rose said, “After years of fighting for increased Staten Island Ferry service, arguing it was not only economically feasible, but an absolute necessity – given our lack of public transportation options, the considerable population growth in the borough since the current ferry was implemented and the development boom both on the North Shore and throughout the Island – we are pleased this administration agrees with us. We thank Mayor de Blasio for taking this significant step toward providing transportation equity for our borough, and Borough President Oddo for his strong advocacy on this issue. For Staten Islanders, who seem to spend half of their lives plotting the timing of their trains or buses to meet up with a boat to take them to work and home again, especially those who work late hours or weekends, this service increase will be a game changer. And for the business community, which stands to profit from the boost in tourism, it will be provide a financial boon and hopefully continue to spur the renaissance of the North Shore.”

“For Staten Islanders, the ship has come in and will continue to come in every 30 minutes, 7 days a week, thanks to Mayor de Blasio, the Staten Island delegation, the Borough President, and timely effective help that I was proud to deliver. After securing federal funding for two new modern, more resilient and reliable ferry boats, New York City has freed up the operating funds needed to provide this additional ferry service on Staten Island,” said Senator Charles Schumer.

“Staten Islanders have one of the longest and most difficult commutes to Manhattan of any workers in New York City,” said Senator Kirsten Gillibrand. “This additional service is good news that will improve the quality of life for Staten Islanders and make Staten Island businesses more accessible.”

"For too long, Staten Island residents have been undeserved by the Staten Island ferry, a critical form of transportation for tens of thousands of New Yorkers,” said Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito. “I'm proud of the City Council's ongoing efforts to improve and increase ferry service on Staten Island and across the City and I thank Mayor de Blasio for working with the Council to strengthen our City's transportation infrastructure.”

“I applaud Mayor de Blasio, Commissioner Trottenberg and Borough President Oddo for expanding Staten Island Ferry service. Today, the Ferry is the nation’s busiest, with over 22 million passengers every year. However, for far too long, Staten Islanders have had to endure crowded commutes and waits of up to an hour for service during overnight hours. The Mayor’s action is a positive step toward round-the-clock 30-minute service, which will enhance the quality of life for Staten Island residents and all New Yorkers who enjoy the Ferry,” said Comptroller Scott Stringer.

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