Travel briefs

Sunday, September 29, 2002

New York promises $14 million for ferry link

ALBANY, N.Y. -- New York is putting up $14 million to help establish a high-speed, Lake Ontario ferry service between Rochester and Toronto.

"The new Fast Ferry will have a tremendous impact on the Greater Rochester area -- boosting tourism, creating new jobs and establishing a quick and convenient transportation link with Canada," says Gov. George Pataki.

With capacity for 800 passengers and 200 cars, the ferry would cut travel time roughly in half to about two hours and initially run three daily roundtrips, according to state officials.

Pataki announced the $7.4 million grant and $6.6 million 20-year loan along with Republican Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno, and Democratic Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver.

A ferry service could still be at least a year away, however.

Mount Rushmore visitors increase by 13.9 percent

MOUNT RUSHMORE NATIONAL MEMORIAL, S.D. -- Spurred by a renewed sense of tourism in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks, Mount Rushmore National Memorial has been a popular destination for tourists this year.

During the first eight months of 2002, visitation increased 13.9 percent from the same period a year ago.

Through the end of August, 2.4 million people had visited the memorial, says Acting Superintendent Mike Pflaum. That's nearly 294,000 more visitors than last year during the same period and puts the memorial on track for a record number of visitors, he says.

--From wire reports

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