NEW YORK CITY — Officials are looking to get "all-weather" ferries for the city's proposed five-borough system after icy conditions forced the East River ferry to shut down.
But officials admit that the boats still won't be able to ride in the worst conditions.
Mayor Bill de Blasio announced his proposed routes in his state of the city address earlier this month, saying the routes — which were first reported by DNAinfo New York — will help address transportation needs for the city's booming population.
The first ferries should set sail by 2017, and will cost an estimated $55 million, the city said.
Ice on the East River forced service disruptions on the existing East River Ferry route on Monday and Tuesday for the first time during a weekday commute.
An official with the Economic Development Corporation said the design of the boats "will certainly be a factor when we move to procure a new operator for citywide ferry service, and we will take all-weather operability of vessels into consideration."
But they aren't built to run under the most extreme conditions, the official said.
"Generally, passenger ferries are not made to run through ice like we have seen," the official said. "And some of the vessels that are suitable for a nimble operation are on the smaller side."
Larger boats, like the ones used for the Staten Island Ferry, can slice through the ice but aren't necessarily ideal for many routes.