By Pepper Fisher

PORT ANGELES – The Port of Port Angeles has come up with a creative plan to replace the 39-year-old John Wayne Marina boat launch floats.

Port of PA staff learned that the Port of Friday Harbor manufactures its own floats for their marinas, so they reached out to the Friday Harbor folks to propose a deal. Would Friday Harbor be interested in fabricating the replacement floats for John Wayne Marina? The answer was yes and an interlocal agreement was drawn up.

The Port of PA’s Environmental Manager Jesse Waknitz described for us the advantages of the new design and materials.

“The main difference is the actual flotation material. Currently, down at John Wayne, it’s tires filled with styrofoam. And, per environmental conditions, for good reason, that’s no longer allowed because the styrofoam can break out of there and float around. So the new flotation is just a solid HTP pipe, which is a much better for the environment, and I think just a better product all around. And they also help strengthen the structure, and provide lengthwise supports to the float. So, that’s a positive.”

The price is a positive, as well. They were budgeting about $220,000 for commercially made floats. Waknitz says the Port of Friday Harbor floats are priced at around $180,000 before tax.

As for the timeline for getting the new floats installed…

“Yeah, I think our goal is to have them shipped over here approximately, you know, fourth quarter of 2024. That way we can install them either fourth quarter or the first quarter of 2025, when it’s kind of a slower season at the boat launch. Not in the summer season.”

(Photo: Floats at Friday Harbor, courtesy of Jesse Waknitz)