Sidney-Gulf Island Ferry proposal

Could an inter-island, passenger-only ferry service between Sidney and the Gulf Islands float as a business?

 The Capital Regional District is looking into it, issuing a request for proposals.

If it becomes a reality the service could serve Salt Spring, North and South Pender, Mayne, Saturna, and Galiano Islands ... as well as Sidney.

Currently getting between the Gulf Islands on BC Ferries takes careful planning and water taxis haven't been able to provide sustained service because of challenges like staffing, capital and operating costs.

A feasibility study determined service to several islands would require funding beyond passenger fares because trips would be costly to operate. The study also notes many of the Gulf Islands have low populations which could result in a small market and limited ability to recover operating fares.

A pilot project would examine a single route, to only one destination and would identify ridership and challenges involved.

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