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City Breaks Ground for Ferry Terminal Project

Glen Cove officials expect alternative transportation plan to jump start the revitalization of city's waterfront area.

Glen Cove became a step closer to bringing the revitalization of its waterfront to fruition Tuesday as city officials held a groundbreaking ceremony for the Glen Cove Ferry Terminal and Boat Basin. 

The federally funded project, which will offer commuters roundtrip ferry rides between Glen Cove and New York City, is expected to be completed in 2012. It has been in the works since 2004, just three years after the city suspended its last ferry service due to low ridership. 

Just minutes before turning the soil with shovels to kickoff the project's construction, state, Nassau County and city elected officials as well as developers touted it as one that illustrates "smart growth," primarily because it promotes the use of mass transit and it aims to increase pedestrian traffic with the creation of a walkable downtown waterfront. 

With roughly $16 million as its cost, the plan is slated to include, among other things, a ferry terminal building, parking facility, restaurant and catering center as well as marine and waterside improvements along Garvies Point Road. The city was able to acquire about $11 million in federal stimulus money and $2.5 million in federal, state and city funds for the project. was selected to construct the terminal in March. A ferry operator, however, has not been chosen yet. 

Kelly Morris, the executive director of the city's Community Development Agency, explained that the groundbreaking is a big step in restoring a deteriorating area, especially since 52 acres of the 213-acre property was once a part of the state's highly contaminated industrial areas. 

"With the help of federal, state and county agencies ... we have been able to remediate this land and it is now ready for construction," Morris said. "This groundbreaking is a monumental step in our effort to reclaim this waterfront revitalization area." 

County Legislator Diane Yatauro (D-Glen Cove) shared similar sentiments, calling the terminal a catalyst that the city needs to reinvent its waterfront. 

"The city has gone through many steps and it's a very slow process, but this groundbreaking is the start of something really spectacular," said Yatauro, the Legislature's Minority Leader.

City officials anticipate that the terminal's construction will generate more than 400 construction jobs, 10 to 15 full- and part-time positions and that it will complete a key part of the city's Master Plan, a document that lists the city's vision for housing, transit and downtown development initiatives.

"The ferry service will bring an economic boost, create jobs and improve transportation options to and from Glen Cove," Mayor Ralph Suozzi said, adding that the city is aiming to extend the ferry's routes to LaGuardia Airport in Queens, Connecticut as well as areas along the Long Island Sound in the near future. "... This ferry terminal is going to bring new life to our waterfront by connecting Glen Cove to other areas ... and it's really about putting a vacant property to productive use."

Eric Bischoff June 04, 2010 at 12:04 PM
I have been living in Glen Cove since 1990 and I am excited about revitalization in this area. But there is a problem that never gets addressed, traffic. Growth, and I have seen much of it in my neighborhood as large beach front properties got carved up and many houses were put up, has brought traffic and speeders that cut through the residential areas. Then you have the disaster intersection at Glen Cove and Northern Blvd. I think there is a solution and that is to turn that intersection into a real big roundabout. This would keep traffic flowing north and south instead of accumulating and waiting as far back as the train station and it would slow down the dangerously high speed traffic from east and west. Why can't we fix this before we bring in more traffic to an already overburdened area. Does the quality of life ever come into play or are we just focusing on making money for developers and to heck with the residents?
Dana Williams June 04, 2010 at 04:48 PM
Hi Eric, Thanks for reading Patch and we will definitely look into the traffic side of this story. Thanks again, Dana
cc January 01, 2011 at 01:08 AM
ferry to no where!!!
Marita Eybergen February 24, 2011 at 05:12 PM
This is great for the community and it looks beautiful (nothing but the best for Nassau) but to get to this place is very scary. With all the traffic on Northern Blvd and you have to still travel north, well this ferry port be busy enough for this to work. Or are they spending money just to fix up this area. Maybe in the future when they add CT and other places, it would be more cost effective as to how many people would really use the ferry.

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