Hundreds crowded in for yesterday's hearing on the future fare of the Algiers Point-Canal Street ferry. Veolia, a private company that manages the Regional Transit Authority, is suggesting a $2 pedestrian fare to cross the river (it's currently free). Some residents are less than pleased with this plan and think there should be reduced fees for regular riders, many who don't have cars and use the ferry as their main mode of transportation to get to work downtown. Ferry hours were drastically slashed and Algiers businesses are ailing from the lack of traffic. But wait, a friendly reminder from City Council President Jackie Clarkson, "RTA did nothing to create this problem and they were willing to come to the table to help us solve the problem." Okay, then.
Because the ferries, which cost almost $9 million per year to operate, are no longer funded by the Crescent City Connection tolls, hours were drastically reduced and the Gretna ferry was permanently docked. It was assumed that the ferries would become privatized, but whoops, no companies came forward to take over. RTA/Veolia said that even with the addition of a pedestrian fare and charging more for the Chalmette ferry, they would still need more loot to make things cost effective.
· Residents want low fares for Canal Street ferry [The Advocate]
· Proposed fare structure for ferries [norta.com]
· All ferry coverage [Curbed NOLA]