Mayor: Citywide ferry service to launch on May 1

The mayor's office says a new citywide ferry service is set to launch ahead of schedule on May 1.



The East River and Rockaway routes will be the first up and running. Mayor Bill de Blasio says they are the priority since those residents have some of the city's longest commute times.



South Brooklyn's route will begin in June, the Astoria route will start in August and the Lower East Side and Soundview routes will launch some time during the summer of 2018.



Nick Messina, manager of Café 58, says the new routes will be good for his business.



"We'll have more people and also there'll be more people working at the Army Terminal and it's a big deal."



However, some who live near the Army Terminal ferry stop say the new hub could result in higher rents.



"Brooklyn is crowded, but now it's going to be 10 times more crowded, you won't see me around," says Derek Barnes, who moved to Queens when his rent got too high in Clinton Hill.



City officials think the new ferry is a game changer. Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams said in a statement, "Addressing the challenges of transit-starved neighborhoods, while stimulating economic growth and quality of life enhancements from Bay Ridge to the Brooklyn Navy Yard, are reasons for us to look forward to the start of service."



A ferry ride will cost $2.75. MetroCards will be accepted on board.


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