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Introducing Ferry Tracker

January 23, 2021

Ferry icon Chimacum headed to Seattle from Bremerton in March of 2021

I love riding Washington’s State Ferries. It’s the largest fleet in the United States and is anywhere between the second and fourth largest ferry system in the world, depending on how you measure it.

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT) offers a tool to track the ferries in realtime called VesselWatch. It’s a really excellent data, but when you’re sitting in line at the terminal with only your phone, it’s difficult to read.

Enter Ferry Tracker. It provides a mobile-first view of the data from VesselWatch.

Ferry Tracker app screenshot

To be kind to the WSDOT servers, Ferry Tracker only updates vessel information on first load or when you explicitly tap the refresh button in the upper-right corner. It works particularly well when saved to your device’s homescreen and launched like any regular ol’ app.

It’s all React hosted on Netlify. The maps are OpenStreetMap via Leaflet, and the CSS is done with Tailwind. The source code is available on Github.


Personal blog by Ryan Travitz. I'm currently working on @tableau. I went to @turingschool.