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Gulf Craft starts construction of new U.S. Virgin Islands ferry


The Gulf Craft LLC shipyard in Franklin, La., has started construction of a new U.S Virgin Islands ferry. The 300-passenger 32-meter Incat Crowther designed catamaran vessel will service the busy tourist and commuter route between Red Hook on the island of St. Thomas, and Cruz Bay on the island of St. John. Currently, two other Incat Crowther 28-meter vessels service this route.

The Government of the U.S. Virgin Islands Department of Public Works received a grant of $1.7 million to build a third ferry for the route in the 2022 round of Federal Transit Administration (FTA) ferry grants.

The USCG Subchapter-K approved passenger ferry has a design that Incat Crowther describes it as “simple and stylish” with accessibility and an elevated customer experience in mind.

“Incat Crowther has a proven track record of designing and delivering tailored passenger ferries for operators throughout the Caribbean,” said Incat Crowther USA managing director Grant Pecoraro. “We are pleased to be collaborating with our longstanding partner, Gulf Craft, to deliver another vessel to this region.”

“Our team of naval architects understands that no two routes are the same,” added Pecorino. “Our digital shipbuilding process enables us to carefully focus on specific operational requirements to ensure our designs are tailored specifically for local conditions, existing dockside infrastructure and with the operator and its customers in mind.“

The new U.S. Virgin Islands ferry will be powered by two EPA Tier 4 compliant Caterpillar C32 main engines, each developing 895 kW at 1,800-2,100 rpm and giving the vessel a speeds of up to 28 knots.

The air-conditioned main cabin provides seating for up to 202 passengers, including five dedicated wheelchair accessible spaces. Two ADA-compliant bathrooms and a fully enclosed luggage room are also provided on the main deck level, along with integrated side boarding ramps.

The vessel’s upper deck will transport up to 100 passengers in spacious outdoor seating, while the vessel’s wheelhouse provides the captain with an excellent line of sight and 360-degree visibility. Wing helm stations are also provided for the captain to ensure safe docking of the vessel.

Source: https://www.marinelog.com/passenger/ferries/gulf-craft-starts-construction-of-new-u-s-virgin-islands-ferry/

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