Today’s news:

E. River ferry service to stop at Hunters Pt.

Spring will bring a new ferry service on the East River serving Long Island City along with points in Brooklyn and Manhattan in what officials say is recognition of a growing population and commerce in waterfront communities.

“East River ferry service is set to make a big splash this spring in our already burgeoning East River communities and their surrounding neighborhoods,” said City Council Speaker Christine Quinn (D-Manhattan).

The new service is scheduled to begin in early June and run from East 34th Street in Manhattan to Hunters Point South in Long Island City, then Greenpoint and Williamsburg in Brooklyn, then Fulton Ferry in Brooklyn before crossing back to Pier 11 in lower Manhattan. Stops at Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn and Governors Island will operate during summer weekends.

One-way fares are to be $3 for one zone and $5.50 for two zones. A passenger would pay $3 to go from Greenpoint to 34th Street or $5.50 to travel from South Williamsburg to 34th Street. A free bus will take patrons during rush hour across 34th Street to Bryant Park and Grand Central Terminal. On weekends, riders would take the M34 bus.

Ferries would operate every half hour and every 20 minutes during rush hour year round from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. weekdays and 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. weekends.

“Many of New York City’s fastest growing neighborhoods like Williamsburg and Long Island City, have tremendous waterfront access and we want to capitalize on that by providing a new, sustainable transportation option for residents,” said Deputy Mayor for Economic Development Robert Steel.

New York Waterways will provide the service under contract with Billybey Ferry Co.

The new service is the result of a $9 million commitment by the city and New York Waterway’s agreement to operate the service for three years.

Reach contributing writer Philip Newman by e-mail at timesledgernews@cnglocal.com or phone at 718-260-4536.

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