New ferry service from South Amboy to NYC set to begin this week
The new ferry service from South Amboy direct to New York City is set to begin on Monday morning.
Local officials say it will help meet commuter demand into Manhattan from New Jersey. The ferry ride from South Amboy will take just under an hour to get into the city.
The very first ferry is scheduled to leave at 5:45 a.m. and then will continue every hour. The ferry will drop people off at Downtown Brookfield Place and midtown at West 39th Street.
There will also be free transfers to Weehawken, Hoboken and Jersey City.
Local lawmakers say there's a significant demand for commuters between central Jersey and New York City. While there's a train stop only about a half-mile away from the ferry terminal, they hope the addition of the ferry will help strengthen the area's economy.
Some South Amboy residents say they are excited to see how everything pans out. Others, however, remain leery until things settle over the coming weeks.
"Now we have two ways of getting into the city... but now a lot of people will be driving through here to get to the ferry so that's definitely a concern," said resident Erna Kajayan.
South Amboy Mayor Fred Henry said the New York Waterway Shuttle System will help mitigate those potential issues.
"They will go around and pick people up and bring them down here, and if there's any other traffic, it probably won't really be coming into South Amboy. It'll be coming from the roads that lead into South Amboy and come right down here," Henry said.
The ferry will depart and arrive at a temporary dock. A new, more permanent ferry terminal is expected to open in 2025. Building the permanent terminal is a $30 million project that will take about 18 months to complete.
For now, the last ferry home in the evenings gets back to South Amboy at 7:25 p.m.