Skagit County Invites Bids for Guemes Island Electric Ferry  

Skagit County is seeking bid proposals for construction and delivery of an all-electric ferry design to replace the M/V Guemes

Skagit County electric ferry
Rendering courtesy of Glosten

Published Sep 19, 2023 5:18 PM by The Maritime Executive

[By: Skagit County, Washington]

Designed by Glosten, the 28-car Subchapter-T vessel has a steel hull and aluminum superstructure, with a propulsion plant consisting of two azimuthing thrusters, electrically driven by a battery-electric system charged from shore.  

“This is an exciting milestone in the process to replace the current ferry,” said Skagit County Commissioner Ron Wesen. “The ferry provides a vital transportation link to Guemes Island and we’re looking forward to finding a partner to help us deliver the first all-electric ferry in our community.”  

Naval architecture firm Glosten was engaged by Skagit County Public Works to develop an all-electric ferry design to replace the Guemes, a 40-year-old diesel-powered vessel. Like its predecessor, the ferry will provide service between Anacortes and Guemes Island. 

Shipyards interested in participating in this Invitation for Bids (IFB) are encouraged to visit https://www.skagitcounty.net/Departments/Rfp/2023ElectricFerry.htm for more details. Bid proposals are due December 4, 2023, by 1:00 p.m. PST. 

About Skagit County’s Ferry System: Skagit County has operated a vehicle and passenger ferry service between Anacortes and Guemes Island, WA, since the early 1960s. The current vessel, the M/V Guemes, is a 21-vehicle, 99-passenger, diesel-powered ferry that was built and put into service in 1979. Today, the ferry operates 365 days a year and transports roughly 200,000 vehicles and 400,000 passengers annually.  

There are no alternative roads or highways that provide access to Guemes Island; as such, the Skagit County ferry system serves as a vital transportation link for its ridership. In addition to transporting commuters, the ferry also carries tourist traffic, construction and logging trucks, essential services trucks, and emergency vehicles and personnel to and from the Island. 

About Glosten: Glosten is a full-service consulting firm of naval architects and marine, electrical, production, and ocean engineers. Founded in 1958, the firm is recognized throughout the marine industry for integrating advanced analysis with practical, experience-based design. In recent years, Glosten has emerged as an industry leader in the design of hybrid and electric-propelled commercial vessels, with multiple vessels already in operation.  


The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.