Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Sea-faring Brooklynites will soon have a new transit option for their morning commute to Manhattan, as the city’s Economic Development Corporation is launching an express southern Brooklyn ferry route along the waterfront from Bay Ridge to Wall Street.
According to Andrew Kimball, president and CEO for NYCEDC, the service, which begins service on March 8th and will only operate on weekday mornings, offers faster service for Brooklyn riders heading to and from Downtown Manhattan, and comes as part of the organization’s Ferry Forward initiative.
“The faster ferry connections in South Brooklyn will not only reduce morning commute times for residents along the South Brooklyn route but continue our Ferry Forward plan of bringing innovative and cost-effective solutions to NYC Ferry,” Kimball said.
“We are thrilled to work alongside Mayor [Eric] Adams, Council Member [Justin] Brannan, and our other partners in the City Council, to ensure NYC Ferry operates more efficiently and continues to connect millions of New Yorkers to jobs, schools, recreation, and our waterfront communities.”
Trips along the new ferry line will go from Bay Ridge, then make stops along Atlantic Avenue and Pier 6 in Brooklyn Bridge Park, before making the Manhattan stops.
Other journey’s will operate from Sunset Park and Brooklyn Army Terminal, stopping at Governors Island, Red Hook/Atlantic Basin, Wall Street/Pier 11, DUMBO/Fulton Ferry and Corlears Hook.
The itinerary change reduces morning travel time between Bay Ridge and Wall Street by 20 minutes, making this one of the fastest ways to get to Downtown Manhattan according to Council Member Justin Brannan.
Brannan’s office has been instrumental in the resurgence of the area’s ferry and played a role in the recent route updates.
“I think the ferry is still really an untapped resource. There’s some much potential there for the NYC ferry system. Making it a viable option for public transportation, that’s really the answer,” the pol said.
While the changes have been a “long time coming,” the council member says there’s still work to be done — specifically for Coney Island.
The area was set to have a landing dock implemented however the EDC struggled to find a viable ferry slip option.
Last November, they were halting all actions for the foreseeable future. Locals like Brannan are still pushing for an oceanside pier, rather than a pier facing the bay side of the peninsula that lies far from the neighborhood’s iconic amusement district.
“This has always been the dream,” he said. “This Bay Ridge express ferry is a colossal win for our community but the final puzzle piece will be getting the Coney Island ferry built.”
For more coverage of the city’s ferry system, head to BrooklynPaper.com.
The owners behind a popular Coney Island wing shop are set to open a second location in Bay Ridge on March 18.
According to Taha Alassari, the co-owner of Coney Island House of Wings, he and his brothers made the decision to extend their wing shop to Bay Ridge after low foot traffic began affecting the growth of their flagship location.
“There’s slow growth there. It’s just the neighborhood we’re in — the foot traffic is low. We’ve been covered with scaffolding literally since the day we’ve opened. No one has even seen our sign. We’ve been doing everything we can to grind it out,” he told Brooklyn Paper. “Once the opportunity came along in Bay Ridge to open, it’s kind of like everything we’d been looking for, as far as foot traffic, close to home and stuff like that. That’s why we jumped on that opportunity.”
The new site will open at 8812 Third Ave., alongside a host of other small businesses on the bustling Brooklyn street.
And, for the Alassaris, the neighborhood holds a significance to the family, as they were born at NYU Langone hospital, graduated from Fort Hamilton High School and are now raising their own families in the area.
“We’re from Bay Ridge, born, raised, educated, currently live, all in Bay Ridge,” the small business owner said. “So this just means a lot to us cause this has been where we’ve been for such a long time.”
With the restaurant’s expansion also comes other developments.
The eatery plans to revamp their menu of wings, burgers and BBQ to include more dishes and desserts — such as smash burgers and milkshakes.
The brothers opened up the brand’s first shop only 17 minutes away at 3100 Ocean Parkway in March 2021. Now, Alassari says another sibling will join the team to help co-run the original eatery as all of their roles are expanding.
“The Coney Island [shop] is surviving, it’s doing well. It’s just a lot of obstacles we have to overcome that we won’t have to deal with in Bay Ridge. That’s why we’re excited to open in Bay Ridge,” he said.
The Alassari brothers are opening a new Bay Ridge Wing Shop on Third Avenue.Photo courtesy of Taha Alassari.The bunch of brothers have their hands full as some of them also work in the education field. Taha serves as a special education teacher at Eagle Academy for Young Men in Brooklyn. While he works in numerous capacities, he says holding up their father’s legacy of owning a business remains the family’s motivation, as previously reported by Brooklyn Paper.
The group looks forward to bringing something new to the Bay Ridge food scene as it’s hard to find a place with wings outside of a dive bar, according to Alassari.
“There’s so many restaurants here but there’s not so many options,” he said. “We’re just bringing a whole new cuisine and menu to the neighborhood and it’s something that we’re very excited about.”
Bay Ridge-based art gallery Stand4 will be hosting a new public art program that celebrates the neighborhood and emphasizes the impacts of climate change on the community.
The community project, “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens,” will be open to the public from April 15 to June 17. Curated by Jennifer McGregor in collaboration with ecoartspace, the multimedia exhibit will include interactive public art installations and exhibitions all throughout throughout the nabe.
McGregor has deep expertise and experience cultivating green spaces and ecological art, and formerly lead Wave Hill’s ecologically-oriented programming.
Stand4 founder Jeannine Bardo has been dedicated to making fine art more accessible and perhaps a bit less intimidating for the community in Bay Ridge. “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens” is her latest foray into highlighting the importance of community engagement with art — particularly art that emphasizes the dire circumstances of the global climate.
Map of art installations and activities at “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens.” The multimedia exhibit will include installations at locations across Bay Ridge, plus a gallery show at Stand4. Image courtesy of Stand4“I’m always excited when artists get to talk to the community or talk to people because every time that happens it’s a bit magical,” Bardo told Brooklyn Paper. “When the artist talks about their work, it demystifies it, and if you’re not from an art background, sometimes it could be a little scary and usually the conversations that come about are really really important because everybody’s bringing their own experiences.”
This engagement is particularly vital, Bardo said, when the topic of the art is about a subject that is as pressing and dire as climate change.
While the art installations and interactive experiences may not provide solutions to the climate change crisis, Bardo and the participating artists hope that by interesting the Bay Ridge community in the topic through art, perhaps more connections will be made to spread awareness.
“I believe everything is connected and I think that we are going through this climate crisis now and we need to somehow come together and come up with answers and appreciate the things around us,” said Bardo.
Artists participating in “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens” include Peter Edlund, whose series “Those Who Transplant, Will Sustain” features Brooklyn’s botanical newcomers; Chris Costan, whose paintings will hang in storefronts throughout the neighborhood; and Kate Dodd, whose project “Bay Ridge Tree Collection” was created to catalogue local trees and bring awareness to the impact climate change is already having on local streets and the people who live on them.
Dodd encouraged participants to make a mini-book dedicated to a local tree of their choosing and submit it to the Tree Collection. The final product will be on view at the Brooklyn Public Library’s Bay Ridge branch, and was funded with a grant Dodd won from the Design Trust for Public Space.
As part of “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens,” artists EJ McAdams and Jimbo Blachly are leading a series of poetry walks through Owls Head Park. Photo courtesy Stand4 Gallery/InstagramOther artists have created soundscapes, photo exhibits, even a “haiku hike” through a local park. Some of the pieces will be accompanied by live performances or educational talks — artist Christopher Lin, whose piece features water samples from the Narrows Bay, will host a workshop in May “exploring the systems at play within a body of water as extensive as the New York Harbor.”
Participating filmmakers include Aaron Assis, Nate Dorr, Sean Hanley, Nathan Kensinger, Nikki Lindt, Emily Packer, Lesley Steele and Kristin Reiber-Harris.
The opening reception for “Bay Ridge Through an Ecological Lens” will be hosted on April 15 at the Stand4 Gallery and Community Art Center at 414 78th St. between 4th and 5th avenues in Bay Ridge. The exhibit will be on display at the gallery and at locations throughout Bay Ridge until June 17, 2023.
Correction: Brooklyn Paper missnamed Peter Edlund’s name in our original publication of this article, we regret this error.
Last updated March 31, 2023 9:01 a.m.