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 86 ft. (26 m) passenger catamaran being built 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 Group 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 high speed ferry into the United States market,” Mr. McKinnon said.
“The vessel is a strong example of the production capabilities of our US-based shipyard and we are confident that the vessel will be a great asset for Lighthouse Fast Ferry.”
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 remembrance of the son of Lighthouse Fast Ferry Vice
President Tony Colasanti, the vessel will be named the “Christopher Colasanti”. Christopher died in the World Trade Center attacks.
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 an ADA rest room are also featured.
In other projects, Austal USA continues
with the construction of a 111ft dinner cruise vessel for Island Queen Cruises of Miami, Florida. Due for delivery in November 2002, the dinner cruise catamaran will operate in the Miami and Biscayne Bay area, offering a variety of charter options appealing to corporate and large private groups.