SHIP BOTTOM – Would you ride a water taxi from Beach Haven to Tuckerton? It could become a reality sooner than you think.
The Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce has been working closely with the Beach Haven and Tuckerton Economic Development Councils on initiatives to boost tourism, economic development and downtown revitalization as part of a Downtown Driven program. One of those initiatives is a water taxi connecting the two towns.
After Chamber members met with stakeholders in both Beach Haven and Tuckerton, it was clear that a water taxi to shuttle visitors, residents and commuters was something everyone was interested in exploring. Since spring, meetings and discussions have been held to talk about short and long-term strategies of running a water taxi, iron out logistical issues and find out if there’s any grant funding available.
On the recommendation of the Tuckerton Seaport, a test run took place on August 12 using USCG licensed Captain Tom Masterson, owner of LBI Boat Tours in Beach Haven. Four trips were offered, two from Tuckerton and two from Beach Haven, to 24 passengers free of charge. All of the seats were filled within 48 hours.
Riders surveyed after the trip said that the service was excellent and that they would recommend it to a friend, and also pay to ride the water taxi.
After the positive feedback, the Chamber and Economic Development Councils will discuss putting the water taxi on a regular route available to residents, visitors and commuters, including additional service for special events like Decoy Weekend and Chowderfest Weekend.
For more information about the Southern Ocean County Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Driven Program, call 609 494 7211, stop into the visitor center at 265 West Ninth Street.