With the number of available phone numbers rapidly running out, the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) will introduce a new area code within the next year.
The UTC made the announcement on May 19. The new area code, 564, will be available throughout western Washington and will jointly service areas with 360, 206, 253 and 425 area codes. The UTC estimates the 564 area code will be activated in fall 2017.
The addition of a new area code means dialing a number will now require a full 10-digit input, regardless of whether the calls are local. Local service providers will be required to provide a comprehensive educational program to inform customers about the change.
According to the North American Numbering Plan administrator, the 360 area code will be out of numbers by early 2018.
The UTC originally approved an additional area code in 2000, but the implementation was postponed thanks to successful number conservation efforts at both the state and national levels.