Austal USA is making progress with their latest project, the 192-ft. vehicle passenger ferry for Lake Express
. The tunnel has been stood and all of the piping and electrical wiring within the tunnel has been installed. Ninety percent of the hull frames have been stood in preparation for fitting to the main deck. The wheelhouse module is 90 percent complete and plating has started. Prefabrication work on the ferry is also in its early stages.
This history-making ferry will
run across Lake Michigan between Milwaukee, Wis., and Muskegon, Mich., It will be the first high-speed vehicle/passenger ferry to operate within the Continental U.S. The aluminum catamaran will be the largest vessel
so far and first of Autstal Ship’s world-class Auto Express designs constructed at Austal USA’s purpose-built shipyard in Mobile, Alabama.
With capacity for 253 passengers and 46 cars, the Auto Express 58 will be capable of 34 knots. The service is scheduled to begin by the summer of 2004.