May 28, 2021
Ferry Facts: Marine Master Plan Phase 2 Begins
The Marine Master Planning Process
It all started in the beginning of 2021 with Phase 1 in the Marine Master Planning. Elliott Bay Naval Architects and KPFF, their affiliate engineering team, met with Ferry and DRBA staff to begin planning for our next generation of ferries. Ferry technical and customer support staff provided an insider's view of our full suite of services. The initial goal was to get an understanding of current operations so that future recommendations would improve our current service, or do nothing to degrade it.
Missed the phase 1 write up in February's Ferry Facts? No worries. Click on the button here.
Next, the consulting team did an assessment of vessel conditions, and expected costs to keep the boats running. The result is a solid business case for new vessels. It substantiates with data what many of us have been experiencing such as increasing downtime due to mechanical issues.
"The assessment will be used to help justify to legislators the funding resources that will be necessary for new vessels. The data will also demonstrate why the resulting new fleet configuration will be the most financially effective," stated John Petersen, Project Manager for Elliott Bay.
Phase One just concluded with the development of seven basic planning assumptions and an initial review of potential fleet configurations. Planning premises range from maintaining or preferably lowering operating costs from the current fleet to a desire for improved crew amenities and an improved environmental profile in fleet operations. The assumptions will be discussed in more detail in upcoming employee meetings.
No configurations are being considered that require major modifications to loading tubes, docks, or any structural changes to our terminals. The aim is to maximize existing support systems and not incur any significant costs other than those needed for the new fleet.
Phase 2 Starts Now
This month, Elliott Bay is scheduling a series of feedback meetings with Ferry staff to both confirm the planning assumptions and present initial fleet configurations that could meet those goals. Five different one-hour sessions are scheduled for Tuesday, June 1 and Wednesday, June 2 with the same material being presented in each. If you are interested in attending any of them, please check with your supervisor to sign up.
In addition, the first public meeting to solicit local input has been scheduled for June 17 at 6PM. Several virtual meetings are planned throughout the planning process and comments are already being compiled through online web comment forms. To see the current slate of comments click the button below and scroll to the bottom of the page.
The result of these planning activities will be a final report that will also be made available for public comment and feedback. The intent is to get as much public input as early as possible so all points of view can be considered. This helps stakeholders understand how and why conclusions were drawn and be in a better position to support the proposed initiatives.
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