Washington State Ferries Long Range Plan

Project news

Washington State Ferries submitted the 2040 Long Range Plan to the Legislature on January 3, 2019. The Plan recommends short-, medium- and long-term actions for WSF to pursue and focuses on a set of investments and service enhancements to be implemented over 20 years.

Map showing proposed service and terminal enhancements to be implemented over the next 20 years

The Plan reflects extensive input from ferry customers, the public and stakeholders, including nearly 900 comments from more than 7,500 people who participated in 32 public meetings on land and on board ferries and in two online open houses.  

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Needs & benefits

  • WSF developed a Long Range Plan to plan for the future of the ferry system through 2040. The plan does the following:
    • Considers demographic trends and ridership forecasts
    • Looks at the condition of the ferry fleet, terminals, and access to them
    • Evaluates our work force and operations
    • Identifies opportunities to use new technology and prepares for climate change
    • Reviews and updates performance measures


  • The objective of the Long Range Plan is to provide information about the needs of ferry customers, establish operational and pricing strategies to meet those needs, and identify vessel and terminal operations and capital requirements
  • The Plan makes recommendations in four key theme areas: reliable service, customer experience, manage growth, and sustainability and resilience 
  • The 2009 Long Range Plan presented a vision for the future of the ferry system. What have we accomplished?
    • Studied and launched vehicle reservations
    • Improved customer web experience for easier trip planning
    • Started construction on the new Mukilteo ferry terminal and Colman Dock
    • Implemented pricing strategies to maximize use of vehicles space
    • Built six new ferries 


  • 2017
    • Kicked off stakeholder advisory groups
    • Provided background information
  • January 2018
    • Advisory group meetings
    • Reviewed work plan
    • Reviewed ridership forecast data
    • Learned about the WSF budget
  • March 2018
    • Advisory group meetings
    • Reviewed plan elements
  • May 2018
    • Advisory group meeting
    • Reviewed plan elements
    • Community meetings
  • June 2018
    • Advisory group meeting
    • Progress report delivered to the Legislature
    • Drafted plan elements
  • July/August 2018
    • Advisory group meetings
    • Drafted plan elements
  • September/October 2018
    • Advisory group meetings
    • Public 45-day comment period
    • Community meetings
  • Fall/Winter 2018
    • Advisory group meetings
    • Finalized plan
    • Delivered final plan in January 2019