The MTA has finalized one of the last pieces of its plan to transport displaced Long Island Rail Road commuters this summer, and on Wednesday announced the names of the two companies that will operate ferries to and from Glen Cove.
Five days from the beginning of what Gov. Andrew M. Cuomo has dubbed “the summer of hell,” the Metropolitan Transportation Authority said National Ferry, of Washington D.C., and Manhattan-based New York Cruise Lines will operate the ferry services to be provided from Glen Cove beginning Monday and lasting through around Labor Day.
“The capacity of New York Cruise Lines’ vessel is 149 passengers, and it will go to Wall Street/Pier 11,” MTA spokesman Aaron Donovan said in a statement. “National Ferry’s vessel, the Patriot II, has a capacity of 225, and will go to 34th Street.”
The Wall Street-bound ferry will depart at 6:10 a.m. and arrive at 7:30 a.m. The 34th Street ferry will leave at 6:35 a.m. and arrive at 7:45 a.m. For the return trips, the Wall Street ferry will depart at 4:30 p.m. and arrive at Glen Cove at 5:50 p.m., and the 34th Street ferry will leave at 6:20 p.m. and arrive at 7:30 p.m.
The ferries are one of the options being provided to commuters as an Amtrak infrastructure renewal plan at Penn Station is forcing the LIRR to reduce rush-hour service to and from the station by about 20 percent. The LIRR will also provide express buses to and from Manhattan and eight locations on Long Island, and will bolster service at its other New York City terminals, Atlantic Terminal in Brooklyn and Hunterspoint Avenue in Queens.
To encourage commuters to avoid Penn Station in July and August, the MTA is reducing fares to the alternative terminals for July and August. And, addressing one concern raised by riders since the discount was announced, the MTA confirmed Wednesday that, because the service disruptions have not yet begun, the reduced-fare tickets to the alternative terminals will be honored at Penn Station until Sunday.
“They can go into Penn or they can go to Hunterspoint without any additional cost,” MTA Chairman Joseph Lhota said.
Beginning Monday, customers wanting to use a ticket to or from Atlantic Terminal or Hunterspoint Avenue will have to pay the difference between a Zone 1 fare and a Zone 3 fare. Once Amtrak’s work begins, Lhota said he would encourage commuters to avoid Penn Station, even if they miss the last train out of Hunterspoint Avenue in the evening.
“I’d like as many people as possible to avoid Penn Station, which is why we’ve come up with this whole array of options for them,” Lhota said.