Austal Limited shipbuilding subsidiary, Austal USA has signed a contract with Lighthouse Fast Ferry of New York (also known as New York Fast Ferry) for the sale of the 86ft. (26 m) passenger catamaran being built speculatively at Austal USA’s shipyard facilities in Mobile, Ala.
Due for delivery in July 2002, the new catamaran will be the third vessel delivered
by Austal USA within six months and follows closely the delivery of two crew/supply vessels to Otto Candies LLC in January.
Austal’s managing director, Bob McKinnon said the sale was a great result for Austal USA and the Austal group.
“We are very pleased to have finalized the first sale of a passenger catamaran into the United States market,” McKinnon said.
The passenger catamaran will operate at a service speed of 27 knots, with the capacity to transport 189 seated passengers on the 60 minute journey between Keyport and Manhattan, with weekend charters including the very popular Yankee Stadium package.
The large increase in demand for the New Jersey route has been attributed to the closure of the PATH train, a subway link south from Manhattan, as a result of the tragic events of September 11 last year.
In honor of the death of Lighthouse Fast Ferry Vice President Tony Colasanti’s son during last year’s World Trade Center attacks, the vessel will be named the “Christopher Colasanti”.
Designed by Austal Ships to meet USCG Subchapter K regulations (46 CFR), this catamaran also features bow loading, a kiosk for snacks and drinks (especially popular in the morning and evening commuter runs) and seats from Beurteaux of Australia. ADA compatible features such as a ramp entry over the bow, 36-inch aisles and ADA rest room are also featured.