Verrazano Bridge Toll Relief — Brooklynian

Verrazano Bridge Toll Relief

edited November 2014 in Brooklyn Politics
Senator Marty Golden and Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis recently launched a petition to provide a 58% discount on the Verrazano Bridge toll for Brooklyn residents. This is a no-brainer if you are one of the few local people who, like me, commute to Staten Island every day. 

Please consider visiting their website to e-sign a petition in support of the campaign.


  • The high, wrong-way toll on the Verrazano doesn't make much sense for anyone (though it does earn money for the MTA).

    Here's a much better plan that raises more money for transit while lowering tolls on bridges that don't have good transit alternatives:
  • Out of every $5.33 toll the MTA collects on its bridges & tunnels, $3.33 goes to subsidize free car trips elsewhere.
  • The "fair plan" proposed in that link involves tolling the East River Bridges.

    Bloomberg failed at his attempt to do so, and I fear DeBlasio has even less power than he did. you have another plan?
  • Much of the toll is also used for mass transit and the ferry riders get a huge break as well so let's not forget about that. Because as we all know, the ferry is a losing proposition for the city.
  • Possible the stupedist idea I've ever heard. We should subsidize MORE car traffic by lowering the toll? No.Thank.You.

    We should RAISE the toll and use the extra money to add more subway, bus and ferry service.
  • @jamzer, I think you missed something. They are saying if they lowered the tolls on the currently tolled bridges AND put the same toll on the free bridges, the toll for everyone would be two dollars lower per ride than what they currently pay under the 5.50/7.50 plan.

    As for ferries, the subsidy is so deep that they are currently not competitive. The true costs for a ferry ride is somewhere in the $20-30 range. Most ferry commuters are paying something in the low $5 range for a one way ride. Compare that to a subway ride which has about a 50% subsidy and you can see why no one is clamoring for more ferries.When you can accommodate 300 people on a boat, even at a small fee it works. When you're moving <50 people its an entirely different story. No one can afford/wants to pay the actual cost of a ferry ride in NYC.
  • I don't think I did Homeowner. I was responding to the original post which simply called for toll relief for Brooklyn residents using the Verrazano bridge.

    If there is a plan to lower tolls on the Verrazano while establishing them on the East River crossings as part of a comprehensive plan to increase funding for mass transit and related infrastructure projects, then I am on board with that.
  • See, I thought you were talking about the "fair plan".
  • I don't think bridge tolls should be used to subsidize mass transit.

    They should instead be used first for bridge maintenance and repair, and second for road maintenance and repair. Our streets are probably worse than those in some third-world countries, and drivers incur thousands of dollars in auto repair costs (damage to tires, wheels and suspensions) due to potholes, uneven road joins, etc.

    Let subway and bus users pay the actual cost of transporting themselves via "public transit", whether via higher taxes or higher fares.
  • edited October 2014
    While you may believe it is more fair for subway riders to pay more of their own way, a lot of the current public transporation riders would probably choose to use cars if public transit subsidies were removed.

    So, NYC area drivers may want to think of the tolls as being a way to keep the road clear of MORE traffic.

    If it makes you feel any better, NYC transit riders seem to pay about 51.2% of their costs. Whereas public transportation riders in Pierce Co, WA only pay about 13% of its costs.

    In Hong Kong, the riders seem to pay for more than the cost of their ride (186%) and the excess may actually be used to pay for roads.

    However, I suspect driving in Hong Kong is still a really bad idea.

  • Interesting writeup in today's DN explains pretty clearly what the issue is with ferry subsidies for NYC.

    Kyle Kimball, president of the city’s Economic Development Corp., said “it didn’t make sense” for the city to spend about $5 million a year to subsidize the weekly rides from Rockaway to Manhattan. The ferry will run its last ride on Oct. 31.

    “I realize that I cannot convince you this is the right decision,” Kimball told a crowd of local residents gathered for a town hall meeting at Beach Channel High School just days before the second anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. “There’s just a difference of opinion on how the city should spend its resources.”

    Kimball’s blunt words about the end of ferry service dashed any hopes of an eleventh-hour City Hall deal to find more funding before the end of the month.

    “This is something we tried six ways to Sunday to make it work,” he told the crowd, noting the city paid about $30 per ticket while riders paid $3.50
  • the other side of this issue is that there are no viable public transportation options connecting Staten Island and Brooklyn. It takes at least an hour to get to SI via ferry from Brooklyn, plus another 1-2 buses to get to a final destination, and there are few buses connecting the two boroughs. Verrazano bridge toll relief through either of the plans discussed here would facilitate travel between the two boroughs. It is as simple as that.
  • So would doubling the toll and dedicating 100% of the excess over actual costs towards building subway tunnels connecting Staten Island to Brooklyn and Manhattan. No one is actually proposing this as far as I know, but it would do more to facilitate travel, as opposed to facilitating driving, than any toll relief.
  • Many Staten Islanders might be opposed to being more connected with the rest of NYC.

    "They" want to easily go back and forth to Manhattan, but they don't seem to want "us" to go to Staten Island.
This discussion has been closed.