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Kitsap fast ferry ‘exceeding expectations,’ transit chief says

A third Kitsap fast ferry route is set to begin in 2020.

With ridership outperforming projections, Kitsap Transit Executive Director John Clauson said the county’s fast ferry system is “exceeding expectations.”

Clauson said the county hopes to add additional routes to the service from Bremerton to Seattle, which started in 2017.

“It’s exciting,” said Clauson, who added the successful launch in Bremerton means the service is spreading to other parts of Kitsap County.

Clauson said the route between Kingston and Seattle, which started in November of 2018, had a record number of passengers last month.

RELATED: Fast ferry service between Tacoma and Seattle ‘feasible,’ study says

Runs between Southworth, near Port Orchard, are set to begin in 2020.

Clauson, who started with Kitsap County as a bus driver in 1983, said he’s glad to see commuters returning to the water.

With communities like Tacoma and Olympia exploring potential fast ferry routes, Clauson said it could mean a return of the Mosquito Fleet, passenger-only boats that enabled travel across Puget Sound before the days of highways and light rail.

“There was a number of these little passage ferries that scooted around… and stopped at all these docks and communities,” said Clauson.

RELATED: From Seattle to Kingston in 39 minutes

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