Poulsbo port looks to double its liveaboards

Rachel Anne Seymour, May 24, 2015, Kitsap Sun

The Port of Poulsbo is a step closer to doubling the number of liveaboards it can have after reaching an agreement with the city on parking.


The port has 12 liveaboards and is looking to provide 13 more for a total of 25 to help meet the growing demand, Port Commissioner Mark DeSalvo said.


There is a waitlist of about 20 port tenants for liveaboard status.


While the number of Poulsbo liveaboards could double, it would not increase the overall number slips at the port.


The port has 253 permanent moorage slips, and 130 guest slips. Permanent moorage is a month-to-month license with the port.


Liveaboards must already have permanent moorage and pay a $57 monthly liveaboard fee on top of a moorage fee, DeSalvo said. The monthly fee for permanent moorage is $5.35 a foot.


Although state regulations allow public ports to have 10 percent of permanent moorage available for liveaboards, the Poulsbo City Council decided to limit the port’s liveaboards in 1983 to 12 slips — 5 percent — unless parking was addressed.


Since then, the port purchased property that is now a parking lot at 19133 Jensen Way — less than a half-mile from the port — with 56 spaces.


The port also owns 15 spaces by its office on the waterfront for staff, loading and emergency equipment storage.


Port tenants are not required to park at the Jensen Way lot, DeSalvo told the City Council, and it is rarely used and often nearly empty.


In an agreement with the city, liveaboard tenants would be assigned specific spots in the Jensen Way parking lot and issued parking stickers that are different from the rest of the port’s patrons.


The port wants to have “zero impact” on downtown parking, DeSalvo said.


The waterfront parking lot, known as Anderson Parkway, is for downtown customers, said Mayor Becky Erickson, and adding an extra 12-14 cars would making parking even more difficult in the busy lot.


To help ensure port patrons use the Jensen Way parking lot, the port outlined enforcement rules.


Liveaboard tenants would be ticketed for parking in other downtown parking places and face having their liveaboard status revoked after three tickets in three months or five tickets in a year, said Port Manager Brad Miller.


“It’s a good solution,” Erickson said. “And will work very well with our system.”


Increasing the liveaboard slips will cost the port an estimated $30,000-$35,000 in impact fees with the city, said Port Commissioner Stephen Swann.


The port commissioners recently agreed to recover the cost of fees in two years.


Swann said the port could raise liveaboard rates, overall moorage rates or revise the port budget.

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