Welders work on a new boat in a shipyard, welding plates on the hull.Washington State has a bold goal of relying on 100% clean energy by 2045. To help us get there, Vigor will be laying the keel for the first of five new 144-car Olympic-class ferries for the Washington State Ferry system. The new ferries will be hybrid-electric, substantially reducing carbon emissions on the state’s maritime highway.

The Olympic-class of ferries are the perfect candidates for electrification, thanks in large part to their hull design which creates smaller wakes and generates less drag. The new ferries will be 100% electric for most of their routes. Over the lifetime of the fleet, these new ferries will reduce carbon emissions by 94% and be substantially less costly to operate.

The keel of the first of these new ferries will be laid in 2020 with delivery slated for 2022. All five of the new ferries will be in operation by 2028, replacing older boats that run on fossil fuels. The company is currently in the design and engineering phase. The construction of the new electrified fleet will not only cut operating costs, but production costs. Historically, boats have been ordered one at a time. Building them in multiples creates purchasing efficiencies.

Learn more about the electrification of Washington ferries.