July 1, 2004 Schedule Changes
Results of Golden Gate Ferry Survey


Background of Schedule Changes
The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway & Transportation District (District) staff proposed to change ferry schedules and associated staffing levels effective July 1, 2004, for the purpose of achieving $875,000 in expense reductions, resulting primarily from implementation of a two, high-speed, Larkspur ferry weekday service schedule.

On July 1, 2004, the Larkspur weekday service will use two high-speed vessels providing 40 crossings, and one Spaulding vessel providing 1 crossing. This configuration provides only one less crossing than is currently provided. Sausalito weekday service will be provided using one Spaulding class vessel. With the exception of minor schedule adjustments, Sausalito weekday service will be similar to the 18 crossings currently operated. Larkspur and Sausalito weekend services will be provided using one Spaulding class vessel on each route with modest schedule adjustments. One less trip would be operated on the Larkspur route while one additional trip would be operated on the Sausalito route.

Passenger Survey Background
Last April, Staff provided ferry riders and stakeholders with opportunities to review and comment on the initial proposed schedules by staff. Staff surveyed ferry riders, conducted an information workshop at the Larkspur Ferry Terminal (LFT), reviewed changes with the Ferry Passenger Advisory Committee (FPAC), and contacted the Sausalito business community. Considerable helpful input was received.

Staff considered the public comments in making its final recommendation. Tables 1A and 1B showing the recommended operating schedules compared to the existing schedules. The explanation of survey results and the recommended changes to the ferry schedules are detailed in Tables 2A through 2D.

Table 1A - Weekday Ferry Schedule (Current & July 1 Schedules) (PDF)

Table 1B - Weekend/Holiday Ferry Schedule (Current & July 1 Schedules) (PDF)

Ferry Passenger Survey Results and
Recommended Ferry Schedule Changes
On April 7 and 8, 2004, a survey was distributed at Larkspur, Sausalito, and San Francisco terminals to gather passenger feedback on the proposed ferry schedule. Almost 1,000 completed survey forms were received from Larkspur ferry passengers and 100 completed forms were received from Sausalito passengers. The response rates ranged from 50 to 65 percent of the estimated number of regular commuters on each of the ferry routes.

Table 2 A
General Survey Responses

Categories
Larkspur
Sausalito
Positive Responses (including 4 without any box checked on Larkspur)
68
1
No Effect on Commute without comments
244
45
No Effect on Commute with comments
105
19
No Box Checked: lean to reduce rides, negative responses
77
2
Will Reduce Rides (negative responses)
314
26
Will Not Ride Ferry at all (negative responses)
191
7
TOTAL
999
100


Table 2 B
General and Trip Time-Specific Comments
New Larkspur Ferry Schedule

Comment(s)
Count
% of Negative Responses
General Boat Capacity Concerns / Even Out Time Gaps
120
20.6%
P.M. Northbound Keep 6:15 p.m. Trip / Close 5:55-6:45 p.m. Gap
109
18.7%
A.M. Southbound Keep 8:10 a.m. Trip / Close 7:50-8:25 a.m. Gap / Meet 9:00 a.m. start time
103
17.7%
A.M. Southbound Keep 7:30 a.m. Trip / Close 7:10-7:50 a.m. Gap / Move 7:50 a.m. Trip Earlier
96
16.5%
P.M. Northbound Keep 4:45 p.m. Trip / Close 4:30-5:20 p.m. Gap
91
15.6%
General Cut Midday Trips / Dont Cut Peak Time Trips
90
15.5%
General Keep Spauldings / Catamarans Break Often
71
12.2%
A.M. Southbound Keep 6:45 a.m. Trip / Close 6:30-7:10 a.m. Gap
59
10.1%
General Keep Current Schedule / New Schedule Not Usable
48
8.2%
A.M. Southbound Keep 8:40 a.m. Trip / Close 8:25-9:15 a.m. Gap
39
6.7%
P.M. Northbound Keep Spaulding for 5:20 p.m. Trip / Capacity Concerns
33
5.7%
P.M. Northbound Keep 3:35 p.m. Trip / Close 3:05-4:00 p.m. Gap
26
4.5%
A.M. Northbound Keep #97 Bus
24
4.1%

Table 2 C
General and Trip-Specific Comments
New Sausalito Ferry Schedule:

Comment(s)
Count
% of Negative Responses
Weekday Keep 7:10 a.m. Sausalito Departure Time
18
51.4%
Weekend Keep 10:55 a.m. Sausalito Departure / First SF Departure Earlier
12
34.3%
Weekend Keep 6:50 p.m. SF Departure / Last SF Departure Later
8
22.9%
General Bus-Ferry Connection Concerns
5
14.3%

 

New Ferry Schedule
As a result of the customers survey responses, staff recalculated the ridership impact of the original proposal and developed a new schedule to address passenger concerns.

The following table shows the changes made in the new schedule for weekday Larkspur service that addresses the concerns raised by the survey. In general, the new schedule addresses concerns on boat capacity and large gaps between peak time trips. This proposed schedule is very similar to the current schedule between the hours of 3:00 p.m. and 6:30 p.m.



Table 2 D
Changes Made to Larkspur Ferry Schedule
Based on Survey Results

Original Proposal
In Response To Comments
New Schedule effective July1, 2004
Response Extent
5:10 a.m. Larkspur Departure (remove bus) Keep Route 97 Bus Route 97 Bus continues
Full
6:30 a.m. Larkspur Departure Keep 6:45 a.m. Trip / Close 6:30-7:10 a.m. Gap 6:40 a.m. Larkspur Departure (closer to current schedule)
Partial
8:25 a.m. Larkspur Departure Keep 8:10 a.m. Trip / Close 7:50-8:25 a.m. Gap / Meet 9:00 a.m. start time 8:20 a.m. Larkspur Departure (8:50 a.m. arrival at SF for possible 9:00 a.m. start-time)
Partial
1:45 p.m. Larkspur and 2:30 p.m. SF Departures Cut Midday Trips / Dont Cut Peak Time Trips No 1:45 p.m. Larkspur and 2:30 p.m. SF Departures
Partial
4:00 p.m. SF Departure Keep 3:35 p.m. Trip / Close 3:05-4:00 p.m. Gap 3:35 p.m. SF Departure
Full
4:30 p.m. SF Departure Keep 4:20 p.m. Trip / Move 4:00 p.m. Trip Later 4:25 p.m. SF Departure
Partial
4:30 p.m. SF Departure Keep 4:45 p.m. Trip / Close 4:30-5:20 p.m. Gap 4:55 p.m. SF Departure
Partial
5:20 p.m. SF Departure (with catamaran) Keep Spaulding for 5:20 p.m. Trip / Capacity Concerns 5:20 p.m. SF Departure (with Spaulding)
Full
6:45 p.m. SF Departure Keep 6:15 p.m. Trip / Close 5:55-6:45 p.m. Gap 6:20 p.m. SF Departure
Partial
7:30 p.m. SF Departure Keep 7:00 p.m. Trip 7:20 p.m. SF Departure
Partial
9:00 p.m. SF Departure as last northbound trip Keep 9:10 p.m. Trip / Last Northbound Trip Later 8:50 p.m. and 9:35 p.m. SF Departures
Partial

Sausalito Weekday Service
The 7:00 a.m. departure was the one trip that received the highest number of comments in the original proposal. Under the new schedule, the 7:10 a.m. departure time is retained.

Weekend Services
The Sausalito weekend service received more comments than Larkspur, probably because of more changes on Sausalito weekend schedule. Most of the comments related to extending the time span of services.

Under the new schedule, the first northbound trip to Sausalito will leave San Francisco at 10:40 a.m., 50 minutes earlier than the current schedule. The last northbound trip to Larkspur will leave San Francisco at 7:00 p.m., 20 minutes later than the current schedule.

Back Up Schedule
Staff has developed a backup schedule for Larkspur Ferry in response to concerns of passengers about the reliability of a 2-catamaran schedule, and for use during scheduled boat maintenance.