WSF and FTA evaluated four alternatives to replace or relocate the Mukilteo Ferry Terminal. The environmental process for this project was re-initiated in February 2010 and is scheduled to be complete this summer.
Why is WSDOT
considering improving or relocating the Mukilteo Terminal?
The Mukilteo/Clinton ferry route is part of State Route (SR) 525, the major transportation corridor connecting Whidbey Island to the Seattle-Everett metropolitan area. It is WSF’s busiest route for vehicle traffic and has the second highest annual ridership. Future usage is expected to increase by 73% by 2030.
The Mukilteo terminal has not had significant improvements since the early 1980s and components of the facility are aging. The current terminal layout makes it difficult for passengers to get in and out of the terminal and contributes to traffic congestion, safety concerns and conflicts between vehicle and pedestrian traffic. The new terminal will improve operations and multimodal connections and safety.
The End Result
An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) is a document that describes proposed project alternatives and identifies environmental effects. WSF and the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) prepared an EIS in compliance with the National and State Environmental Policy Acts (NEPA/SEPA). FTA is the federal lead agency for the NEPA environmental review process. WSDOT is the state lead agency for SEPA.
WSF and FTA released a Draft EIS in January 2012 and selected a Preferred Alternative (pdf 1.3 mb) in May 2012. The two agencies released a Final EIS in June 2013. FTA is anticipated to issue a Record of Decision (ROD) this summer, which will complete the environmental review process and will allow WSF to move forward with final design and construction when funding becomes available.
WSF analyzed four alternatives in the Draft EIS.
All alternatives, with the exception of the No-Build, include the following components:
- One operational ferry slip
- New multi-bay transit area
- Four toll booths
- Holding lanes with dedicated staging for bicycles, carpools and priority vehicles
What is the Preferred Alternative?
Based on comments from the public, agencies, and tribes, WSF and FTA selected a modified Elliot Point 2 Alternative as their Preferred Alternative in May 2012. This option was selected because of its ability to meet the purpose and need of the project and to minimize environmental impacts.
The Preferred Alternative (pdf 1.3 MB) relocates the ferry terminal to the western portion of the tank farm property where the water is deeper and the ferry slip can be closer to the shore, creating a shorter trestle than other alternatives. The alternative includes a new passenger and maintenance building, a supervisor’s building, and four new toll booths.
It is the alternative that is located closest to the transit center and commuter rail station. As part of this alternative, WSF will remove the existing ferry terminal and tank farm pier, eliminating thousands of tons of toxic creosote-treated debris from Puget Sound.
The new terminal will:
- Improve safety and accessibility for pedestrians, vehicles and bicycles
- Improve the efficiency and reliability of ferry operations, including vehicle and passenger loading and unloading
- Improve transit connections for riders who travel without a car and help ensure reliable multimodal connections
- Reduce the ferry-related congestion along Mukilteo’s central waterfront
- Provide public access to the Mukilteo waterfront
What is the project timeline?
- 2010-2013 - Environmental process
- 2013-2015 - Design
- 2014-2017 - Construction (depending on funding)
The estimated cost of the Preferred Alternative is approximately $140.9 million (M). The Legislature has identified $108.2 M for the project, which includes a mix of state funds and federal funds. To date, WSF has secured $21.6 M in federal planning and design grants. Because of its multimodal emphasis, the project is anticipated to be highly competitive for federal funding.
How can I get more information?
Hadley Rodero, Communications Lead, at 206-462-6398 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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