Water Taxis Anyone?

Water taxis could connect the City to sleepy coastal suburbs.

By Matt Baume
|  Wednesday, Oct 13, 2010  |  Updated 4:45 PM PDT
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You may not be able to catch a taxi on city streets in San Francisco, but you might be able to catch a taxi in the San Francisco Bay.

The Port Commission this week approved a plan to provide water taxi service around the bay. The ferry would run from Pier 1 1/2 to Fisherman's Wharf, making it useful for people for people who are not headed anywhere important. When's the last time you have an urgent meeting on Fisherman's Wharf?

Just like street taxis, these are no-frills services: no scenic stops, no food. Ultimately, the plan is to connect the City with Tiburon, Sausalito, Oakland, and Berkeley. Current ferry service to those destinations, provided by Blue and Gold Fleet, is painfully slow. It can take hours to get from San Francisco to Angel Island.

It's unclear when the service will start, but it's expected to come sometime in the next six months. Ticket prices have yet to be set.

Meanwhile, San Franciscans are increasingly experimenting with new transportation methods. With Muni unreliable and increasingly costly, fewer people are riding the bus. Higher tolls on the Bay Bridge have also sent drivers to off-peak hours and to BART.

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