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3805 Harborview Drive
Gig Harbor, WA 98332

(253) 857-9344

Working to Preserve Gig Harbors Historic Working Waterfront this non-profit boatyard located in historic Gig Harbor, Washington is the birthplace of the Thunderbird sailboat.

Marine Railways Capital Campaign

MARINE RAILWAYS Capital campaign 2017-2019

we are pleased to announce the campaign to reconstruct the marine railways at Eddon Boatyard is underway!

(click the image to enlarge)

Watch BoatShop volunteers complete Phase I, installing the outside rails, in just eight days.

Thanks to our railways supporters



A capital campaign to support completing the marine railways project at the historic Eddon Boatyard is underway. Identified as the highest capital priority in the BoatShop’s Strategic Plan 2017-2021, reconstruction of the marine railways are an important part of Gig Harbor BoatShop’s charge to perpetuate the working waterfront skills, uses, and traditions at the historic Eddon Boatyard and aboard classic vessels of Puget Sound.


Why is the marine railways system at Eddon boatyard important?

Like Eddon Boatyard, the marine railways system will be a community resource. Completing the marine railways is a mission-critical project that will allow the BoatShop to expand its educational program and community service offerings to include larger-vessel restoration and maintenance.  

Considered an essential component of a working boatyard, marine railways were historically located at Eddon Boatyard and removed during environmental clean-up nearly a decade ago. Reconstructing the marine railways system has always been envisioned as part of the comprehensive multi-million dollar restoration of Eddon Boatyard, and work is partially complete. 

A marine railway system (known as a ‘ways’) consists of tracks or rails that extend from the boatyard shops to beyond the mean low-water level. A cable-tethered carriage powered by an electric winch travels along the tracks. Boats are placed on the carriage and gently slid along the rails into or out of the water. Boatyards must have the ability to get boats in and out of the water to make repairs or launch newly-built boats.

How much will it cost?

The estimated project cost to complete the railways is $400,000. The project is phased. The projected cost of Phase I, completing the outside rails, is $70,000. The projected cost of Phase II, completing the inside carriage, is $105,000. The projected cost of Phase III, completing the outside carriage, is $225,000. All timelines are dependent upon fundraising success, and work will be completed as funding is in place. Permits are in place and design is complete.

What is the status of the project?

Phase I, constructing the outside railways, was completed in December 2018. We are currently focused on fundraising for Phase II, completing the lower inside carriage.

how can i get involved?

To learn more about the project, including donor and naming opportunities, please contact Gig Harbor BoatShop at (253) 857-9344 or Or, you may click here to make a donation directly to the BoatShop (please specify your gift should be applied to the marine railways capital campaign).


Click here to learn more about the project.