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Washington State Route 339: Map

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State Route 339 (SR 339) is a long ferry route designated as a state highway in the U.S. state of Washingtonmarker. It connects Vashon Islandmarker's Vashon Heights ferry terminal to downtown Seattlemarker's Pier 50, via a passenger-only ferry, the MV Skagit. The ferry is financed by the King County Ferry District (KCFD) and tolls collected at Pier 50. Despite being part of the KCFD, the ferry is operated by Washington State Ferries (WSF). SR 339 is one of only four ferry routes providing access to and from Vashon Island, and has the lowest annual average ridership of the four routes. The state of Washington took over the operation of the ferry route in 1951, and designated it SR 339 in 1994.

Route descripion

The southern terminus of SR 339 at the Vashon Heights ferry terminal
The entire route of SR 339 is in Puget Soundmarker and is served by the MV Skagit. The passenger-only ferry starts out from the Vashon Heights ferry terminal on Vashon Island and heads in a northerly direction, passing Blake Island State Parkmarker on the west. It briefly sails into Kitsap Countymarker before the route turns east and passes the Alki Point Lightmarker and Alki Pointmarker before entering Elliott Baymarker, and docking at WSF's Pier 50, just south of Colman Dock, where the rest of the WSF operated ferries dock in Seattle.

Traveling at a top speed of , the MV Skagit makes the crossing in about 35 minutes. There are currently three crossings each direction Monday–Friday, and no service on Saturday or Sunday.

History

Ferries have provided transportation to and from Vashon Island since the days of the Seattle Mosquito Fleet, but the state government took over the operation of the Vashon Island ferry on June 1, 1951. The MV Skagit was built in 1989, and the ferry was designated as a state highway in 1994. In 2003 the average daily ridership was 827 passengers per day, based on a five-day week, compared to 1,015 passengers on average when the route operated on a six-day schedule in 1999. This number has decreased in 2004, with an average of 529 passengers per day traveling on the ferry. WSF operates and maintains the MV Skagit currently, but by July 2009 the KCFD will assume all responsibilities of the operation. Currently the route no longer receives state funding, and King County will be responsible for all costs of the route to be funded by property taxes. Vashon Island is only connected to the rest of the region via four different WSF ferries, three departing from the Vashon dock, the other departing from the Tahlequahmarker dock on the south end of the island. SR 339 is currently the only passenger-only ferry; the other three ferries are auto ferries.

Tolls

Tolls are currently only collected on trips departing Pier 50; return trips to Seattle are not charged. The current adult toll is $8.70, with bicycles assessed an additional $1.00 toll. Wave2Go is a prepaid toll system which allows commuters to purchase either 10 ride cards or monthly passes. The KCFD has stated that there will be no changes to the current toll structure.

Major intersections

Both intersections are located in King Countymarker.

Location Destinations Notes
Vashon Heightsmarker Access to Southworth via Vashon–Southworth ferry
Seattlemarker Pier 50


References




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