Monday, May 4, 2009

Bonding on the boat

My name is Jennifer Caldwell and I work for the Hood Canal Bridge team as a document control specialist, but over the past few days I’ve been riding the water shuttle across the canal.

My assignment: answer questions people have about the bridge closure, transit and water schedules and other issues.

Some people have said they prefer the water shuttle to their normal commute. The shuttle provides amazing views. If you watch closely, you might even see some porpoises swimming around in the water.

Some people have suggested ways to improve our services, while others have commented about the inconvenience.

All of this, I expected. But one thing has stood out, and that’s the conversations people strike up on the water shuttle rides. They are sharing this challenge, and they have more in common than they knew.

They start talking and realize they are neighbors, know the same people, work at the same companies. It’s neat to watch and listen.

This is a small thing, I understand … but even during this time when people are faced with a challenge, there is good coming out of it.

So keep talking, keep getting to know one another, and keep asking me questions. We’ll get through this together.

5 comments:

Sarah said...

Hi Jen! Sarah Lamb here :) Wonderful that you're helping people get around during the closure- keep up the good work!

Starship said...

I found a problem today. I live in the Lofall area and had intended to just have my wife drop me off and pick me up at the dock. I was told this morning by the WSP that she could not drive on the road to the dock.

I found lots of room in the area above where the WSP car parks that would allow her to pull off the side of the road and make a safe u-turn with out interfering with the buses in any way.

This restriction now requires me to walk about a mile each way or drive 5 miles and take a bus back. A waist of fuel and adding an hour to my trip each way.

What are the chances of an adjustment to this system for people that live close to the Lofall landing?

irwinj@wsdot.wa.gov said...

Hello Starship,

While you are unfortunately in a "gray area" -- as I have been informed -- I would stay tuned for updates as a number of residents share your position and have similarily expressed their concerns.

I don't think we'll be changing our policy on kiss-and-rides, but we are evaluating other options.

Starship said...

Okay, another suggestion then.
On the other side the bus stops to pickup and drop off riders between the ferry and the shine pit. Why can't you do that on this side? Perhaps at one or both of the traffic lights on Hwy 3? That way we would have a close by place we could be dropped off, catch a passing bus to the boat and save the time and gas of having to drive past Lofall to Pt Gamble only to ride back on the bus.

floating about said...

Starship has a great idea--make one stop for very locals at the tavern-on one side(very safe to stop) and the gas station--I am talking Big Valley rd. It is crazy to go to Pt. Gamble, and I am sure there will be much appreciation!!!