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Colman Dock construction to mess with ferry riders

The Colman Dock on Seattle's waterfront. (KIRO 7 image)

Seattle ferry riders need to start preparing for service disruptions and schedule changes. Colman Dock construction is going to cramp your style at the start of the year.

In less than a month, the final pieces of the old Colman Dock terminal building will be gone, but to finish the demolition, ferry riders are going to have to deal with some pain.

“All the vessels coming in and out of Colman Dock, going to Bainbridge Island or going to Bremerton, will be sailing out of one slip,” said Sharon Gavin with the Washington State Ferries.

All sailings will be working on a temporary schedule from January 4 to January 20, which could make for significant delays.

“Most of the sailings change between five and fifteen minutes, however, later in the afternoon and early evenings schedules may change by up to an hour,” Gavin said.

Ferry directors don’t want boats backing up at Colman Dock, and there are a few places where two boats can’t pass each other. Colman Dock had a similar one slip operation over the summer, but only lasted a few days. This is more than two weeks of disruptions.

“It’s something that a lot of our customers are used to, but they may not remember it or they may have an old schedule,” Gavin said. “This is a slightly different schedule so we want to make sure that we’re getting that out well in advance so people can be prepared for the changes.”

The ferry system chose this low-volume time of the year to complete this phase of work on the dock to keep disruptions to a minimum. It’s not easy to completely renovate the state’s largest ferry terminal while keeping service going.

This $455-million renovation project still has about three years of work left before it’s done. This will not be the last change to your regular ferry routine.

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