Keystone advisory group bucks dock name change

The Keystone Ferry Advisory Committee is recommending the Washington State Transportation Commission reject a proposal to rename the Keystone ferry terminal the Coupeville ferry terminal.

The Central Whidbey Chamber of Commerce has been leading the effort to change the name of the ferry terminal that connects Central Whidbey Island with the Olympic Peninsula. Chamber officials argue the name change would reduce confusion among tourists researching Whidbey Island. Coupeville has better name recognition than Keystone.

Julia Hodson, member of the three-person advisory committee, said people would expect a Coupeville terminal to be placed in town, not several miles away. She added that the bus connection at the terminal isn’t great and walk-on passengers could find a long wait when departing the ferry.

“You would expect the ferry would land in Coupeville,” Hodson said of having a Coupeville ferry terminal.

The Keystone Ferry Advisory Committee is a legislature-mandated body that acts as a liaison between the community and Washington State Ferries. In addition to Hodson, Brian Martin and Jennifer Meyer also serve on the committee.

Renaming the Keystone ferry terminal could also cause more confusion if efforts to start a ferry from Coupeville to Camano Island ever become a reality.

The Central Whidbey Chamber of Commerce submitted paperwork and letters of endorsement for the name change last week to the Washington State Transportation Commission. The commission could take the matter up as early as its July meeting scheduled in Olympia.

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