The proposed site of a new Mukilteo Ferry Terminal moved forward last month with the Port of Everett Commission authorizing the acceptance of the fuel tank farm from the U.S. Air Force.
The former fuel tank farm, located one-third of a mile east of the current ferry landing, is the proposed site of a new $140 million ferry terminal.
Only $102 million is in the state’s budget through 2019, which would cover engineering and early construction. The state Department of Transportation, Ferries Division will need to drum up the other $38 million to fully fund the massive project.
In June, Ferries Division and the Federal Transit Administration released the final environmental impact statement for the Mukilteo Multimodal Project.
“We feel pretty strongly, especially once the environmental documentation goes through, that we’ll be highly competitive for additional grants to fill that gap,” said Nicole McIntosh, Ferries Division’s terminal design engineering manager.
A major impetus for the project is to improve commuter access and ferry loading and unloading. Moving the terminal north will take it closer to the Sound Transit commuter rail station and will remove the immediate traffic of the Mukilteo Lighthouse Park area, with people going to the city park and boat ramp, the lighthouse, restaurants, an inn, the park-and-ride lot and more.
As it exists currently, the terminal layout makes it difficult for passengers to get on and off the ferry, and contributes to traffic congestion, safety concerns and conflicts between vehicle and pedestrian traffic.
The state agency, in a news release, said the new terminal will improve operations and multimodal connections and safety.
“Right now, our terminal is separated with that local intersection,” McIntosh said, referring to the intersection near Ivar’s and the ferry ramp.
“To get off the ferry, we have to go through a populated area.”
At the proposed 20-acre site, the entire ferry operation would be contained on state property, away from the Mukilteo traffic that leads to the park, Diamond Knot Brewery, Ivar’s and the Silver Cloud Inn, as well as a fisherman’s pier and a public beach access popular with divers.
The next step is for Washington State Ferries, Sound Transit and the City of Mukilteo to work with the Port of Everett to transfer the land for purposes of the terminal relocation.