East Bank or West Bank?
Today’s Flats offer a variety of entertainment options on both sides of the Cuyahoga River, and now the Cleveland Metroparks
has eliminated the need to make a decision on which side to dine, dance and play with last month's launch of the eLCee2 water taxi.
For $2, passengers get unlimited rides across the river on the 26-foot Crosby yacht. The taxi can take 18 passengers and four bikes at a time. It's also ADA accessible and dog-friendly.
“The water taxi is exciting for the Flats because it is another ingredient in the revitalization of the area,” says Metroparks director of communications Rick Haase. “For Cleveland Metroparks it is all about helping people connect to our trails and to our parks, while at the same time helping them connect from the East Bank to the West Bank of the Flats.”
The eLCee2 launched ahead of the Memorial Day weekend on Friday, May 27 during a boating safety program hosted by the Metroparks, Flats East Bank
and the U.S. Coast Guard
. Metroparks CEO Brian Zimmerman cut the ribbon along with Cleveland Metroparks board of park commissioners Bruce Rinker and Debbie Berry. Speakers included Zimmerman, Scott Wolstein with Flats East Bank and lieutenant commander Mickey Dougherty of the Coast Guard's Cleveland Marine Safety Unit.
After the ceremony, the eLCee2 made its maiden voyage across the river from the taxi station at 1170 Old River Road on the East Bank to the West Bank station under the Main Avenue Bridge and back. After that, eLCee2 had a spectacular debut, with 3,579 passengers taking the taxi over Memorial Day weekend alone.
Five Metroparks employees share the captaining of the eLCee2, which is named after a group that included Leadership Cleveland
alumni, Metroparks representatives and members of a Kent State University entrepreneurship class. They began floating the idea of a Flats water taxi service in 2014.
eLCee2 runs Thursdays from 4 to 7 p.m.; Fridays from 4 to 9 p.m.; Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m.; and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. The taxi will operate from Memorial Day weekend through Labor Day each season.
The Cleveland Metroparks is part of Fresh Water's underwriting network.