FOLLOWUP: Water Taxi changes bicycle policy, limiting number and size

bikeswatertaxi(Photo courtesy Paul, taken aboard the Water Taxi during 2016 Viaduct closure)

Back in December, we reported on a King County Water Taxi survey “to address bicycle capacity issues,” with questions including whether a fee should be charged to bring a bike on board. The decision on that, so far, is “no,” but the county has announced new limits on bicycle capacity per sailing, as well as a limit on bicycle size. The new policies take effect a week from Monday (on June 24th) and are explained in this update on the Water Taxi website.

13 Replies to "FOLLOWUP: Water Taxi changes bicycle policy, limiting number and size"

  • Ron June 14, 2019 (6:13 pm)

    There’s no reason a giant electric bike should take the water taxi anyhow when it’s such a short ride. There’s a massive influx of commuters on these that have no clue how to ride a bike nowadays. I see scary behavior every day from them. 

    • Mike hodges June 15, 2019 (6:23 am)

      Ron,I bike, love biking, want other people to bike but ….I agree.  And I wish I didn’t. I see so many clueless cyclists zooming around on these absurdly large bikes.  They are much better suited for road riding than sharing lanes and trails with bikes operating at predictable bike speeds.  ….and buying an e-bike to haul on the water taxi?  It’s head scratching. 

      • chemist June 15, 2019 (3:49 pm)

        Is you live on Vashon Island it’s like $6.55 round-trip for taking your bike on the vehicle ferry, then a bike ride through West Seattle, the low bridge, etc to get to Downtown.  If you get on the foot ferry it’s $5.75 each way for a ride direct from VI to downtown with an ORCA pass.  I suspect there’s a life-hack there of taking the vehicle ferry from VI to West Seattle (eastbound) and then using the foot ferry to get back from downtown.

  • AJP June 14, 2019 (7:41 pm)

    Every day? Really? What did egregious behavior did you see today?

  • Steve June 14, 2019 (9:49 pm)

    Too many bikes?? But I thought it’s impossible to ride a bike in Seattle because of the rain and hills. Surely this is a misprint. 

    • Mike June 16, 2019 (1:51 pm)

      Oh, don’t be fooled by the nice weather.  The boat is not full of bikes when it rains, when it’s cold, and most of the people with bikes using the Water Taxi don’t ride the hills like I do.  I got tired of waiting for the boat both ways, so I just ride the whole distance now.  I love looking at the bicycle counter drop to double digits in crappy weather.  Bunch of fair weather riders in Seattle.

  • BA June 15, 2019 (5:49 pm)

    I have an semi-recumbent electric bike. Yes, it’s a bit larger than  high speed racing bike for a very specific reason. I have limited mobility in one leg and need the seat set further back and the pedal cranks shorter than usual. Without these, there is no way I could bike at all in Seattle. Perhaps it seems like a short ride downtown across the bridge for some, but it doesn’t seem that way to me. I use my bike to get me to the water taxi and then up to Capitol Hill for my doctors appts and back up California Avenue. Not all of us have the ability to run sleek, high speed racing bikes.  Many of whom by the way rip past me at a far quicker pace along Alki than seems prudent. My E-bike has given me access to biking again after a long while. I hope you understand why senior citizen respectfully disagrees.  

  • Rick June 16, 2019 (6:49 am)

    OK. So you’re special. We seem to have a lot of those folks here. We’ve become a very special city.

  • rico June 16, 2019 (8:20 am)

    I was considering changing to a bike commute using the foot ferry, but with that option being removed, I will stick with my current method because until there is a safe riding route through SODO, I am not taking that level of risk at my age.  They probably should have this issue more of a consideration when they built the boat.

  • MJ June 16, 2019 (9:08 am)

    There have been times with the low level bridge has been closed, what then?  

    • Mike June 17, 2019 (7:16 am)

      You wait, like everyone else.  It’s up to the Coast Guard to determine whether it opens or not.

  • MJ June 17, 2019 (5:56 pm)

    Mike my comment was regarding times when the low level bridge is closed due to maintenance/ mechanical issue.  

    • Tsurly June 18, 2019 (1:37 pm)

      Four solid options:1) Ride around2) Take the water taxi3) Put your bike on the bus4) Use the bike shuttle over the high bridge that is provided during closures

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