New, built-in-B.C. ferries connect West Kootenay communities

Glade II, the new, built-in-B.C. cable ferry connecting Glade residents with Highway 3A across the Kootenay River, is undergoing final testing on site and will be in service at the beginning of February.

“This new, state-of-the-art ferry gives West Kootenay residents the comfort of knowing they can get groceries, attend medical appointments and access other important services when they need to,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “This ferry will not only help residents get from A to B, but will also ensure a safe, reliable and efficient crossing of the Kootenay River for many years to come.”

Glade Ferry II heading down the ramp for it’s maiden voyage across Kootenay River January 15, 2018. TransBC Photo

In addition to the new ferry for Glade, other cable ferries are being constructed to replace aging vessels serving the community of Harrop, on the Kootenay River, and Arrow Park, on Arrow Lake. A new cable ferry to serve Adams Lake went into service in spring 2017.

The new ferries to serve Glade, Harrop and Arrow Park will be larger and able to carry more vehicles than the existing ferries, with capacity increased to handle commercial vehicles at full highway loads. While the ferries are docked during off-peak hours, power will be supplied by on-board batteries. This will reduce noise at the terminal, and lower the vessels’ greenhouse gas emissions.

“West Kootenay residents have been eagerly awaiting the completion of these new ferries to better connect communities across the region and facilitate day-to-day travel,” said Katrine Conroy, MLA for Kootenay West. “It’s exciting to see Glade II come online to better serve Glade residents, and I look forward to the completion of the remaining two ferries that will service Harrop and Arrow Park over the coming year.”

In 2016, Waterbridge Steel of Nakusp was awarded a $27.9-million contract to design and build four new cable ferries. All new vessels are scheduled to be in service by the end of 2019. The project is generating employment for approximately 30 people over four years, with the majority of work taking place in Nakusp.

Quick Facts:

  • There are 14 inland-ferry routes in B.C. that are operated for the Province of B.C. under contract.
  • Five of the routes are served by cable ferries, five are reaction ferries (propelled by river current), three use free-running ferries and one is served by a tug and barge.
  • Last fiscal year, the province’s inland ferries carried approximately 1.5 million vehicles and almost 2.4 million passengers.
  • The Glade cable ferry carried more than 141,000 vehicles and more than 191,000 passengers last fiscal year.

Learn More:

A photo of Glade II is available at:

For information on the province’s inland ferries, visit:

Glade Ferry II gets ready to launch