US: NYC Receives $10 Million to Electrify Island Ferry

New York City Mayor, Eric Adams, has announced that the city has been awarded a federal funding grant of over 10 million USD to support ferry operations serving both Governors Island and Staten Island.

7.5 million USD of the grant, which New York City has received on behalf of the US Federal Transit Administration, is planned to fund the installation of a new rapid charging infrastructure to support the new hybrid-electric Governors Island Ferry.

The remaining 3 million USD of funding will facilitate the rehabilitation of an offsite storage facility to support the Staten Island Ferry, locally referred to as ‘Building 34’.

$7.5 million of the grant will fund the installation of a shoreside rapid charging infrastructure to support the new Governors Island Ferry

A first of its kind within New York Harbor, the new Governors Island Ferry is expected to eliminate more than 800 tonnes of carbon emissions each year. Mayor Adams, along with the Trust for Governors Island, is aiming to establish the island as a national example for the conversion to green operations, following the announcement of the new Center for Climate Solutions and New York Climate Exchange this past April.

Mayor Adams said:

“New York City’s waterways are key arteries for our city — and the $10 million federal investment we have delivered for our ferry systems today will strengthen this smart, enjoyable way to enjoy the ride from point A to point B.

“With another major win for the Staten Island Ferry, our administration is helping Staten Islanders get to work in the morning and home to their families in the evening. At the same time, we are putting innovative technology to work — reinforcing Governors Island as a nation-leading centre of climate innovation and welcoming this first-of-its-kind public, electric vessel to provide cleaner air in New York Harbor. We are grateful to the Federal Transit Administration and to our federal, state, and city partners who joined us in advocating for this investment in New York City.”

The grants were secured in conjunction with the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (also known as the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act), which was passed in November 2021.

The ferry’s rapid charging system will allow it to operate with zero-emission, battery-only propulsion, with the vessel’s hybrid propulsion system reducing air pollution via the use of a proprietary toggle, allowing it to switch between battery-only operation and battery-assisted hybrid operation with diesel backup.

Services between Lower Manhattan and Governors Island are scheduled to begin during summer 2024, with construction of the shoreside charging infrastructure expected to be completed by 2026.

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