The city’s fourth NYC Ferry route launched Tuesday connecting Astoria and Long Island City in Queens, along with Roosevelt Island, to Midtown and lower Manhattan.
The Astoria line is expected to add 1,800 daily riders to the 12,000 who currently use the system — including on routes that link the Rockaways and South Brooklyn with Manhattan.
The program has been so popular since starting in May that the city added capacity to three of its 20 boats.
“It’s a new way for people to get around and we’ve got to take advantage of it,” Mayor de Blasio said after greeting passengers arriving at a landing on East 34th Street in Manhattan.
“Our streets are too crowded. Our subways are too crowded. Our waterways are nice and open, and so that’s why we knew we had to get back to the water.”
Dottie Jeffries, 66, a passenger on the inaugural ride from Roosevelt Island, said she was perplexed that the island hadn’t received ferry service sooner.
“I am absolutely thrilled. I’ve lived on Roosevelt Island eight and a half years and to me this is the most exciting thing that’s happened in a long time,” he said. “I laud the city for what it’s done in getting these routes going.”
De Blasio said another route connecting the Soundview section of The Bronx with Manhattan would start in 2018.
The ferry charges $2.75 a ride — same as the subway.