Why are beach parking fees increasing?
Gateway is increasing parking fees in 2021 at Jacob Riis Park in order to maintain and improve visitor services. Eighty percent of the money raised from beach parking fees stays within the park. The revenue will be used to improve the condition of visitor facilities and help cover the increase in cost for services, such as lifeguard protection. The beach parking fee is only charged at Riis Park from the Saturday before Memorial Day through Labor Day. Pedestrians, bicyclists, and visitors using public transportation are still be able to enjoy the park for free year-round.
What are the new fees?
Effective Saturday, May 29, 2021, the new beach parking fee at Riis Park will be $20 per vehicle and $50 per oversize vehicle. The new season pass will be $100 for a vehicle and $200 for an oversize vehicle.
When was the last fee increase? How many times have fees increased?
The last fee increase was 2012. Gateway has increased fees twice since 1974, when Gateway was established.
Why raise fees now?
The decision to raise parking fees weighs multiple factors. Gateway is a destination for all visitors and must remain affordable. As visitation numbers continue to rise, this fee increase will help the park maintain the amenities that visitors expect and deserve, such as safe and clean beaches, restrooms, and shower facilities. Even with the fee increase, the cost of a visit to Gateway will continue to be in line with nearby beaches.
Are the any changes to parking pass benefits?
I’d like to buy a season pass. Where are they sold?
Season passes for Riis Park are sold at the entrance booth.
What has fee money been used for in the past?
Hundreds of projects and programs in the park have been funded in full or part with fee money. These include:
- Fixing the historic boardwalk railing at Jacob Riis Park.
- Expansion of public kayaking and sailing programs.
- Rehabilitation of the Ryan Visitor Center at Floyd Bennett Field.
- Renovation and repair of the Wise Clock at Jacob Riis Park.
- Renovation of the playground and picnic area at Canarsie Pier.
- Repairing the tennis courts, spray fountain and basketball courts at Frank Charles Park.
- Lifeguard services.
What would the increased revenue be used for?
The new revenue will provide enhanced visitor services, including repair and maintenance of facilities, capital improvements, resource protection, and visitor programs and services. Here are some future proposed projects:
- Rehabilitate the entrance booths and lanes at Jacob Riis Park for increased safety and smoother entry, and restripe the parking lot.
- Replace signs throughout the Jamaica Bay unit.
- Improve ADA accessibility to the beach.
- Repair and replace fire hydrants.
- Replace the drainage system at the East Pond at the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge.
- Remove hazardous trees and replace with new plantings.
Can I still use my Senior Pass/Access Pass?
Yes, visitors with the Senior Pass and Access Pass will continue to receive a 50% discount on parking fees.
Are there any other discounts?
Active service members and veterans, as well as visitors with Every Kid Outdoors vouchers will receive free beach parking.
What can I still do for free?
Plenty! You can still visit the Ryan Visitor Center, the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, Frank Charles Park and Fort Tilden for free. Entering Jacob Riis Park by walking, biking or public transportation will still be free. Interpretive and recreational programs such as tours, sailing and kayaking also remain free.
What is the difference in prices and benefits with other surrounding beaches?
Current prices are at or below comparable pricing for nearby beaches (with the exception of State Beaches, which are not market rate).
- Coney Island:
- Street parking $1.50/hr, 1-hour max
- Commercial lot parking $15-$25/day
- Jones Beach State Park:$10 daily between Memorial Day and Labor Day, $8 off season
- Nickerson Beach Park: $35/vehicle, $15/vehicle for county pass holders
- Robert Moses State Park:$10 daily between Memorial Day and Labor Day, $8 off season
- Ocean Beach Park: Resident $12/person, Non-resident $15/person