(WSB photo from October 24, taken at Seacrest Pier)
We were asked recently about West Seattle Water Taxi ridership since the week-plus Alaskan Way Viaduct closure. Found the answer hiding in plain sight on the Water Taxi website. Even after the late-October closure, ridership ran way above last year, according to this month-by-month chart, which reports 9,734 rides last month – close to quadruple the 2,578 rides in November of last year. According to both the King County Ferry District‘s online budget documents and discussions we’ve had with the staff of County Councilmember Joe McDermott (who chairs the Ferry District’s Board, another set of hats the council wears), the 2012 plan for the Water Taxi includes a 50-cent fare increase in the spring as well as ongoing planning for new vessels to take the place of the leased boats that have been in use on the WS and Vashon routes. (Most of the cost of those boats will be borne by grants from the federal government.) One more note: No Water Taxi service on the two upcoming “official holiday” Mondays, December 26 and January 2.
West Seattle, Washington