Parramatta River ferry services

Parramatta River ferry services connect suburbs along the Parramatta River in Sydney with Circular Quay by commuter ferry. The services are numbered F3 and form part of the Sydney Ferries network.

Parramatta River
Shane Gould in June 2014
WaterwaySydney Harbour, Parramatta River
OperatorHarbour City Ferries
System length20 wharves, 27km

History

Although Parramatta wharf served ferries in the early part of the 20th century, for a long time until the late 1990s Meadowbank wharf was the terminus of all Parramatta River ferries. Silt in the river and sludge from factory and industrial waste upstream, and the previous design of ferries meant that the deep hulled vessels were unable to go further upstream than the Meadowbank bridge. However, from dredging work and the introduction of catamaran ferries, RiverCat ferries now proceed to Rydalmere and Parramatta.

At one time, the New South Wales Government was keen to make extensive use of ferry transport to Homebush Bay for the 2000 Summer Olympics, staged nearby. The Sydney Olympic Park wharf was built and used, although Olympic spectators were largely encouraged to use buses and trains.

Wharves

Circular Quay

Circular Quay is a major Sydney transport hub, with a large ferry, rail and bus interchange. The Cahill Expressway is a prominent feature of the quay, running from the east, over the elevated railway station to join the Sydney Harbour Bridge in the west. Sydney Cove was the site of the initial landing of the First Fleet in Port Jackson. Circular Quay was originally mainly used for shipping and slowly developed into a transport, leisure and recreational centre.

Sydney Ferries services use wharves 2, 3, 4 and 5 at Circular Quay. Each wharf has ticket vending machines and ticket barriers, and is wheelchair-accessible.

Barangaroo

Barangaroo ferry wharf serves Darling Harbour. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible.

Balmain

Balmain ferry wharf serves the suburb of Balmain and is located on Thames Street. Balmain is only served by F3 ferries during peak hours and F8 at all times.

Cockatoo Island

Cockatoo Island ferry wharf serves Cockatoo Island. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible.

Drummoyne

Drummoyne ferry wharf serves the suburb of Drummoyne and is located on Wolseley Street. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible.

Huntleys Point

Huntleys Point ferry wharf serves the suburb of Gladesville and is located on Huntleys Point Road. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible.

Chiswick

Chiswick ferry wharf serves the suburb of Chiswick and is located on Bortfield Drive.

Abbotsford

Abbotsford ferry wharf serves the suburb of Abbotsford and is located on Great North Road. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. The wharf is served by bus route 438 and L38 to City Martin Place via Leichhardt. As of February 2018, it is currently closed for an upgrade. Temporary bus route 437 is operating to Chiswick wharf.

Cabarita

Cabarita ferry wharf serves the suburb of Cabarita and is located on Cabarita Point. As of 2011, it is the busiest and fastest growing wharf on the river.[1] The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. The wharf is served by bus route 466 to Ashfield railway station via Burwood and Strathfield.

Kissing Point

Kissing Point ferry wharf is located in Kissing Point Park. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. The wharf is served by bus route 507 to Macquarie University via Meadowbank and North Ryde, or Circular Quay via Victoria Road.

Meadowbank

Meadowbank ferry wharf was the westernmost point in the Sydney ferry network until 1992. This wharf serves the suburb of Meadowbank and is located on Bowden Street. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. The wharf is served by bus route 513 to Carlingford.

Sydney Olympic Park

Sydney Olympic Park ferry wharf serves the Sydney Olympic Park precinct and is located on Bennelong Road. The wharf has a single jetty used for docking of RiverCat ferries. The wharf was built in 1998 for the purpose of serving passengers for the Sydney 2000 Olympics, and served the RiverCat service which brought the Olympic Torch to the Olympic Stadium for the Opening Ceremony. It now serves residents of Wentworth Point. A few services a day terminate at this wharf. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. The wharf is served by bus route 526 to Rhodes, or Burwood via Strathfield.


Rydalmere

Rydalmere ferry wharf opened in 1992, this wharf serves the suburb of Rydalmere and is located on John Street. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible.

Parramatta

Parramatta ferry wharf opened in 1992, this wharf serves the city of Parramatta and is located on Charles Street. The wharf is wheelchair-accessible. Services between Rydalmere and Parramatta are replaced by buses during extreme low tides.[2]

Patronage

The following table shows the patronage of Sydney Ferries network for the year ending 30 June 2018.

2017-18 Sydney Ferries patronage by line[n.b. 1] [3]
F1
4947000

Patronage split post-November



Patronage split pre-November
F2
1506000
F3
2900000
F4

(new)
2545000
F5
592000
F6
837000
F7

(new)
136000
F8
469000
F4

(old)
760000
F7

(old)
637000
  1. Figures based on Opal tap on and tap off data.
    = Lines were extensively revised in November 2017:
    • F4 Darling Harbour was combined with part of F7 Eastern Suburbs to form F4 Cross Harbour
    • The remaining part of F7 Eastern Suburbs became F7 Double Bay
    • F8 Cockatoo Island was split off from F3 Parramatta River

References

  1. NSW Govt Delivering For Commuters:Restoring and Improving Sydney Ferry Services. Archived 5 October 2011 at the Wayback Machine Media release. The Hon Barry O’Farrell MP - Premier of NSW.
  2. Ferries at low tide and replacement buses Transport for NSW
  3. "Ferry Patronage - Monthly Comparison". Transport for NSW. Retrieved 15 September 2018.
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