WA: Vessel Construction Program

Vessel Construction Program

The Washington State Department of Transportation built three new ferries, using a design-build contracting method that helped deliver the vessels in just 42 months, and nearly $7 million below the project’s $213 million budget.

The new ferries replaced four 1920s-era Steel Electric ferries that were pulled from service in 2006 over safety concerns. The new vessels replaced a critical link for the 660,000 annual customers who rely on the marine highway. WSDOT’s Ferries Division saved time and money by buying an existing ferry design and modifying it to meet local requirements, utilizing on-site inspectors to review work and resolve issues as soon as they arose, allowing the contractor flexibility to reduce costs by finding the least expensive materials, and coordinating stakeholder communications and team building sessions.


WA: Vessel Construction Program

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