NYC Skywriting

A grouping of photographs taken form the Roosevelt Island Tramway across the East river between Roosevelt Island and Manhattan’s East Side.

The Roosevelt Island Tramway is an aerial tramway in New York City that spans the East River and connects Roosevelt Island to Manhattan. Prior to the completion of the Portland Aerial Tram in December 2006, it was the only commuter aerial tramway in North America.

Over 26 million passengers have used the tram since it began operation in 1976. Each cabin has a capacity of up to 125 people and makes approximately 115 trips per day. The tram moves at about 16 mph and travels 3100 ft in 4.5 minutes. At its peak it climbs to 250 ft above the East River as it follows its route on the north side of the Queensboro Bridge, providing views of the East Side of midtown Manhattan. Two cabins make the run at fifteen minute intervals from 6:00 a.m. to 2:30 a.m. (3:30 a.m. on weekends) and continuously during rush hours. It is one of the few forms of mass transit in New York City not run by the MTA, but notably uses its Metrocard.

The tram is operated by Interface on behalf of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corporation of the State of New York, a state public benefit corporation created in 1984 to run services on the island.


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