Weekly update

Read the weekly update WSDOT Assistant Secretary Patty Rubstello, the head of Washington State Ferries, sends to staff, colleagues and stakeholders.

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Each January, there is a special edition recapping the previous year. View the 2021 Year in Review (PDF 1.2MB).

Here is the latest edition of the WSF Weekly Update:

Sept. 22, 2022

International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association Annual Meeting & Exhibition

I just returned from the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association 90th Annual Meeting & Exhibition in Austin, Texas. The event is for tolling professionals around the world to gather, share knowledge, explore new solutions and spark new business opportunities. In addition to networking with transportation professionals from around the world, I participated in a panel discussion on electric vehicles.

Four people on a stage behind a table in a panel discussion with a large slideshow on a projector nearby
While serving as moderator for a panel discussion on electric vehicles, I shared our electrification efforts. WSDOT’s Alternative Fuels Program Manager Tonia Buell spoke on what we’re doing from a roadway perspective.

Fauntleroy terminal project Community Advisory Group discusses Level 2 screening results

We met with our Fauntleroy ferry terminal replacement project Community Advisory Group (CAG) last night. The group reviewed the results of Level 2 screening of options to replace the aging, seismically vulnerable terminal. Two alternatives will move forward in the environmental review process. One would keep the dock at the same size as the current facility and the other would expand the dock to hold up to 186 vehicles. Both alternatives would be designed to minimize and avoid effect to the nearshore environment and nearby Cove Park. We are no longer considering widening the dock in the area around Cove Park. As planning continues, we will continue to refine the alternatives and do further environmental review on both options.

Screenshot of slide showing Fauntleroy terminal replacement alternatives
This screenshot of the CAG presentation shows the two alternatives we will continue to study for replacing our Fauntleroy terminal.

The CAG is one of three advisory groups providing us with input, along with the community, to help inform decisions and shape the project. The public is invited to attend all advisory group meetings. Our next Technical Advisory Group meeting is at 1 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 28. Advanced registration is required. Project-related questions and comments are always welcome via email. Recordings of recent meetings are available in the community engagement section of the project website.

Learn about upcoming roadwork on main route for Southworth terminal

A WSDOT fish barrier removal project on the main road in and out of our Southworth terminal (State Route 160/Sedgwick Road) is scheduled for summer 2024. You can learn more about the work plans and provide feedback through Sunday, Oct. 23, at an online open house. There will also be an in-person open house from 5 to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 27, at the Port Orchard Eagles Club (4001 Jackson Avenue SE), featuring the same information in the online open house. Attendees are welcome to join any time. Project team members will be available to explain the project, answer questions and take comments.

Fall sailing schedule starts Sunday, Sept. 25

We’re just three days away from switching over to our fall sailing schedules! The season change will bring timetable adjustments to our Anacortes/San Juan Islands route and minor tweaks to our Mukilteo/Clinton run in the early morning and late evening. On our Port Townsend/Coupeville route, Saturday, Oct. 8, will be the last day we sail the peak season 10 and 10:40 p.m. Friday and Saturday final round trip until next spring.

Lots of bicycles on our Edmonds/Kingston route Sunday, Sept. 25

We’re expecting a lot of bicyclists on our Edmonds/Kingston route Sunday, Sept. 25, for the 28th Annual Kitsap Color Classic. People boarding a ferry by vehicle should plan for delays and limited car capacity or consider alternate routes. Participants are asked to follow directions from our staff.

Several bicycles on the car deck of a ferry
Most of the bicycle traffic will be on our morning sailings out of Edmonds, then Kingston departures in the afternoon.

Hundreds of motorcycles on Whidbey Island routes Sunday, Sept. 25

The 39th Annual Oyster Run in Anacortes will attract many motorcycles onto our ferries Sunday, Sept. 25, especially on our Mukilteo/Clinton and Port Townsend/Coupeville routes. Motorcyclists arriving at our Mukilteo and Clinton terminals may be required to line up with all other vehicles and load on a first-come, first-served basis due to high demand. For those traveling on the Port Townsend/Coupeville run, a motorcycle reservation is strongly encouraged.

Customer kudos

“[…] I’m in love with the person working today at the Bainbridge ferry terminal toll booth. They got us right on the boat and were so sweet to me and my doggie. I know things are really difficult right now so that was a very lovely surprise. Thank you!”

-Seattle/Bainbridge customer

Patty Rubstello
Assistant Secretary, WSDOT/Ferries Division

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Improved access to 98.2 miles of upstream fish habitat

through 15 fish passage projects in 2021.

28% increase in the value of exports and imports 

from $90.2 billion in 2020 to $115.5 billion in 2021.