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New Ferry Build



The Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District (District) intends to release a Request for Qualifications (RFQ) for detailed engineering and design of one (1) new passenger-only 46 CFR subchapter K ferry vessel in the fall/winter of FY 21/22.  This will be the start of the Design-Bid-Build process. The construction phase will be performed pursuant to a contract let separately from this RFQ.

The catamaran passenger vessel will provide transportation services for customers within the U.S. Highway 101 Golden Gate Corridor and operate in established District routes with service from Larkspur, Sausalito, and Tiburon, to the San Francisco Ferry Building.  The expected passenger count is 450 with a service speed of 30+ knots. This 450-passenger vessel design and construction project will be funded in part with Federal Transit Administration (FTA) funds and will include a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) project goal.

Per FTA regulations, a Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) project goal of 1.04% is proposed for this procurement. District staff will host a Public Participation meeting on October 13, 2021, from 12:00 p.m. – 1:30 p.m., (PST), to give an overview of the project and technical specifications, discuss the proposed DBE project goal for comments and evaluation, and answer general questions. This Public Participation meeting is a joint effort with the San Francisco Bay Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) that also intends to procure a new ferry vessel.


Based on comments received on October 13, 2021, during the Joint Public Participation meeting, the updated DBE project goal is 1.55%. To hear comments, please scroll down to listen to the recording for this meeting. 


Effective November 3, 2014, modifications to 49 Code of Federal Regulations (C.F.R.) Part 26, Participation by Disadvantaged Business Enterprises in Department of Transportation Financial Assistance Program, includes ferries in the definition of Transit Vehicle Manufacturers (TVMs). 49 C.F.R. Part 26, §26.49 requires each TVM, as a condition of being authorized to bid or propose on FTA-assisted transit vehicle procurements, must have a DBE Program or have submitted DBE goal methodology to FTA.  TVMs must have an approved goal methodology and be listed on FTA’s certified TVM list at the time of solicitation in order to be eligible to bid on the recipient's TVM projects.

Because there are no shipyards listed on FTA’s certified TVM list, the District may request FTA’s approval to establish a DBE project-specific goal for DBE participation in the procurement of transit vehicles in lieu of complying through the procedures of §26.49. Part of the requirements for establishing the project goal is to provide meaningful consultation with stakeholders to review and provide input on the proposed DBE project goal. 


The CUCP provides "one-stop shopping" certification services to small, minority, and women-owned businesses seeking to participate in the U.S. Department of Transportation DBE Program. Learn more here.

How to Find DBEs?

The District will only accept DBE firms certified through the CUCP. DBEs are required to be certified with the CUCP upon contract award. The CUCP DBE database contains up-to-date information on certified DBE firms and is required to be used to search for DBE firms in an effort to meet the DBE project goal and contracting requirements. The entire database can be downloaded or exported. To find a certified DBE firm, visit

How to Become a Certified DBE?
The CUCP is charged with overseeing DBE certification activities performed by the various certifying agency members. CUCP certifying agency members are responsible for certifying DBEs. It is not necessary to apply for DBE certification at more than one agency. For more information, or to complete the online DBE application, please visit

DBEs that are certified in their “home state” located outside of California, may go through an interstate certification process with the CUCP. There is an expedited application for interstate DBE certification, however, this process can still take 30-60 days. Firms may request a copy of the out-of-state declaration by writing to The District is not a CUCP certifying agency member. 

The District and WETA will host an Interstate DBE Certification Webinar on October 20, 2021, from 10:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m., (PST). Caltrans will provide an overview of the interstate certification process and requirements.

 register Here


Read the District’s DBE and Small Business Enterprise Program (SBE) Element:
Diversity Program for Contracts (PDF)

FTA’s DBE requirements:


To receive information and updates for this project, please register to join the District's Interest and Networking List. Primes and potential qualified DBE subcontractors/suppliers are encouraged to register to create a networking list.

register Here 


Project Engineer, Ferry Division
James Shea:, 415-622-6842
DBE Program Administrator
Artemisé Davenport:, 415-257-4581


On October 13, 2021, at 12:00 p.m. (PST), District staff hosted a Joint Public Participation meeting with the San Francisco Bay Water Emergency Transportation Authority to discuss both agencies' intent to procure new ferry vessels. This meeting was an opportunity to discuss and comment on the District's proposed DBE project goal for the new ferry build procurement. 


OOctober 20, 2021, at 10:00 a.m. (PST), District staff and the San Francisco Bay Water Emergency Transportation Authority hosted a Joint Interstate Disadvantaged Business Enterprise (DBE) Certification Webinar, presented by the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), to provide an overview of the interstate certification process and requirements. Out-of-state DBE firms that are certified with the California Unified Certification Program (CUCP) will only be accepted for credit toward DBE project goals. For questions, contact Caltrans' Certification "Analyst of the Day" M-F, 8 AM-5 PM at 916-324-1700 or  


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