Image by Joe Mazzola via Wikimedia Commons
After a fare increase that went into effect this past weekend, the Verrazzano–Narrows Bridge is now the most expensive bridge to cross in the country, the New York Post reports. The cost to take the Verrazzano from Brooklyn to Staten Island is now $19, up from $17. Drivers with an E-ZPass will be charged a lower rate of $12.24, up from $11.52. Staten Island drivers, however, will be spared the price increase and only have to pay $5.50 under a new rebate program. The cost in that direction was slated to increase to $6 but at the last minute Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Legislature put up $6 million a year to keep the tolls low for folks living on the Forgotten Borough.
As the Post notes, the new rate surpasses the $18 cost to cross Virginia’s Chesapeake Bay Bridge-Tunnel—which is 23 miles long, compared to the Verrazzano which only runs 2 and a half miles.
As for Staten Islanders getting a lower rate, Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis said, “That bridge is our only way to connect. Staten Island is absolutely deserving of the credit. It’s part of what government should be doing. I’m also advocating for Brooklyn residents because no one should be paying $19 to drive over a bridge to go to work.”
“Last time I checked, a bridge has two sides. It is RIDICULOUS that the discounts offered to Staten Island residents have NEVER been offered to Brooklyn residents,” Councilman Justin Brannan, a Democrat from Bay Ridge, tweeted on Sunday.
“The Staten Island discount has existed for over 20 years, and I’ll always fight to ensure that it continues,” said State Senator Diane Savino to Bklyner. “Unlike other city residents, Staten Islanders have no choice but to pay a toll when they leave home. This provides them with some monetary relief for that burden. That being said, I have and will continue to work with my Brooklyn colleagues to find a solution for Brooklyn residents who travel regularly to Staten Island for work, school or to visit family.”
Additional city crossings impacted by fare increases were the Robert F. Kennedy Bridge (formerly the Triborough), Throgs Neck Bridge and the Queens Midtown Tunnel, which will all now cost $9.50, or $6.12 with E-ZPass.
[Via New York Post]
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Tags : Verrazzano-Narrows Bridge