NYC ferries hit 1 million customer goal sooner than expected

NEW YORK (WABC) -- New York City's newest ferries are far more popular than anyone could have ever guessed.

Perhaps that's because traffic and our subways are so plain awful this summer.

The one million customer goal was supposed to be reached in late August, but it was reached on July 26, much sooner than anyone expected.

Claudi Coger is 82 years old and has taken the subway all her life.

For her, the closest subway stop is a mile-and-a-half away.

But a new ferry coming to Astoria on August 29th will cut her travel time to Manhattan in half.

"I'm a waterway person, I'm a nature-girl, I love it," Coger said.

The mayor's been promising a new ferry service for two years and it finally began in May.

Now about 12,000 people ride the new ferries every day.
"The idea of NYC Ferry was to be a game-changer. Just a few months into it, this is the beginning of something very, very big for the city. Because, you know the classic phrase, 'If you build it they will come,'" Mayor de Blasio said.

The Rockaway line is so popular that City Hall is adding extra service and bigger boats.

At least once a week, moms in long island city travel with kids in strollers to parks in Brooklyn.

"I think it's great, I love the ferry. It's really easy to get-around my kids on the ferry," said Christie Alexander, a Queens resident.

"I think it's a great idea. It's such a pleasant way to travel. So, I'm all for it," said Julie Chang-Murphy, a Queens resident.

Right now there are three ferry lines: Rockaway and East River ferries began in May, the Brooklyn line in June.

Again, the new Astoria line to 34th Street begins August 29th. It promises to be a 38-minute trip.
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