Rockaway Park, Queens
Rockaway Park is a neighborhood in the New York City borough of Queens. The area is on the Rockaway Peninsula, nestled between Jamaica Bay to the north and the Atlantic Ocean to the south. The neighborhood of Rockaway Beach lies on its eastern border while the community of Belle Harbor is situated on its western side. The neighborhood is part of Queens Community Board 14.
Rockaway Park has been called the "Irish Riviera". The United States Census, 2000 showed that 36.0% of the population were of Irish ancestry in the ZCTA for ZIP Code 11694. The Saint Patrick's Day parade in Rockaway is the second-largest St. Patrick's Day Parade in New York City, second only to New York City's Saint Patrick's Day Parade up Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. Rockaway Park is becoming famous for its beach side food businesses, as beach goers from gentrified Brooklyn neighborhoods have increasingly spent their summers in the area. One of the most famous new businesses is a shack called Rockaway Taco. The increasing popularity of Rockaway Park and the Rockaways among out of state tourists has led to one more travel option to the area. In addition to the A train and LIRR (which goes to Far Rockaway, from there one must transfer to the Q22 bus to get to Rockaway Park), one can now take a school bus named Rockabus from Williamsburg, Brooklyn.
The area is served by bus routes operated by the MTA Bus Company. The Q22 bus runs the length of the Rockaway Peninsula. The Q52 runs from Beach 69th Street in Arverne, over the Cross Bay Bridge via Cross Bay Boulevard to Woodhaven. The Q53 runs from Beach 116th Street, over the Cross Bay Bridge via Cross Bay Boulevard to Woodside, and Woodside LIRR station and 61st Street subway station. The Q35 runs from Beach 116th Street to the Flatbush Avenue – Brooklyn College subway station, and the Brooklyn College, in Brooklyn via the Marine Parkway-Gil Hodges Memorial Bridge and Flatbush Avenue. It goes through Belle Harbor, Neponsit, and Jacob Riis Park on the Rockaway Peninsula.
In the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy on October 29, 2012, which caused massive infrastructure damage to the A train south of the station at Howard Beach – JFK Airport, severing all direct subway connections between the Rockaway Peninsula and Broad Channel, Queens and the Queens mainland for many months, ferry operator SeaStreak began running a city-subsidized ferry service between a makeshift ferry slip at Beach 108th Street and Beach Channel Drive and Pier 11/Wall Street in Lower Manhattan, then continuing on to the East 34th Street Ferry Landing in midtown Manhattan. In August of 2013, a stop was added at Brooklyn Army Terminal.  Originally intended as just a stopgap alternative transportation measure until subway service was restored to the Rockaways, the ferry proved to be popular with both commuters and tourists and was extended several times, most recently in late January. It is now scheduled to run through early May, and city officials will at that time consider a further three-month extension, until August 1, to provide time to evaluate the ridership numbers and to determine whether to establish the service on a permanent basis. The fare would be raised to $3.50 per ride during the extension period from $2 previously. Since its inception, the service has carried close to 200,000 riders, city officials said.
- Queens Community Boards, New York City. Accessed September 3, 2007.
- Grace, Melissa. "Boro goes for brogue", New York Daily News, March 9, 2007. Accessed August 21, 2008.
- Census Data Ancestry for the 11694 5-Digit ZCTA, United States Census Bureau. Accessed July 23, 2006.
- Queens County St. Patrick's Day Parade & Cultural Committee. Accessed September 27, 2011.
- Rock Rock Rockaway Food Stands. Oct. 18, 2012.