Lake Express Partner Welds a Start to Ferry Construction
Key stakeholders involved in the landmark project to build a 192-ft. high-speed ferry for Milwaukee-based Lake Express LLC attended a ceremony on July 10 to celebrate the start of the vessel’s construction at the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, AL. Chris Pemberton, Austal USA’s Vice President of Sales and Marketing, welcomed the guests and explained that construction of the aluminum catamaran was actually already well underway, as was evident in the main construction hall of Austal USA’s modern shipbuilding facilities. Pemberton acknowledged the Maritime Administration’s support for the project and lauded the vision of the Director of the Port of Milwaukee, Ken Szallai.
News: Lake Express Partner Welds Start to Fast Ferry
Key stakeholders involved in the project to build a 192-ft. high-speed ferry for Milwaukee-based Lake Express LLC attended a ceremony on July 10 to celebrate the start of the vessel's construction at the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile, AL. Chris Pemberton, Austal USA's Vice President of Sales and Marketing, welcomed the guests and explained that construction of the aluminum catamaran was actually already well underway, as was evident in the main construction hall of Austal USA's shipbuilding facilities. "MARAD's recent confirmation of loan guarantees under the Title XI program was vital to this project moving forward, and it is a great pleasure to be involved in realizing Ken's 10-year-old dream of a high speed link across Lake Michigan," Pemberton said.
News: Austal Launches Lake Express
On March 20, Austal USA launched its seventh and largest vessel to date. Lake Express, a 192 ft. high-speed vehicle-passenger ferry rolled out of Austal's purpose-built aluminum shipbuilding facility in Mobile, Ala., and into the Mobile River. "This project is a further step in building up capacity and capability at Austal USA which will stabilize our efforts to be a major contender in larger contracts in both the commercial and military markets," said Austal USA CEO, Greg Metcalf. With capacity for 248 passengers (COI for 400) and 46 cars, the Auto Express 58 will be capable of 34 knots. It will link the cities of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Muskegon in Michigan…
Lake Ferry Services Suspended for Maintenance
After four years of heavy summer use on Lake Michigan, the Lake Express high-speed ferry ended service early this fall for regularly scheduled maintenance in Sturgeon Bay, Wis. The 192-foot catamaran ferry was pulled out of the water after cruising to the Bay Shipbuilding yard Oct. 24, a day after the Milwaukee-to-Muskegon service ended for the year. The Lake Express has operated until Nov. 1 in past years. The dry-docking of The Lake Express will allow the Milwaukee-based ferry operator to clean and repaint the hull and rebuild the boat's four Rolls Royce water jets. The time out of the water also will allow the U.S. Coast Guard to inspect the vessel. The Lake Express crosses Lake Michigan about 1,000 times each summer sailing season, operating almost 19 hours a day.
Austal USA Launches 192-ft. Ferry
On March 20, Austal USA launched its seventh and largest vessel to date. Lake Express, a 192 ft. high-speed vehicle-passenger ferry rolled out of Austal’s purpose-built aluminum shipbuilding facility in Mobile, Ala., and into the Mobile River. “This project is a further step in building up capacity and capability at Austal USA which will stabilize our efforts to be a major contender in larger contracts in both the commercial and military markets,” said Austal USA CEO, Greg Metcalf. With capacity for 248 passengers (COI for 400) and 46 cars, the Auto Express 58 will be capable of 34 knots.
High Speed Solid State S-band Delivered for US Ferry
A Solid State S-band radar with 8-ft antenna and high speed rotation – reportedly the world’s first and smallest – has been installed by JRC for the high speed car/passenger ferry Lake Express. The 192-ft USCG-inspected Subchapter catamaran travels at a service speed of 34-knots between Milwaukee, Wisc. and Muskegon, Mich. JRC said the dual X- and S-band radar installation offers Lake Express the features, design and integration of the new Multi Function Display as well as the ability to utilize a high speed S-band radar.
Austal Delivers for U.S.
The new Austal Auto Express 58 catamaran “Lake Express” entered service on June 1. Operating between Milwaukee, Wis., and Muskegon, Mich., “Lake Express” provides a crossing time of 2.5 hours slicing in half the time it would take to drive around the southern tip of the lake, through a congested Chicago. Another Austal vessel, the Australian-built “Spirit of Ontario I”, is scheduled to begin service across Lake Ontario between Toronto and Rochester, New York, on June 18. The establishment of the Austal USA shipyard in Mobile…
Austal Makes Progress with Ferry
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…
Fast Car Ferry Panel to Address WorkBoat Show
and current projects underway at the International WorkBoat Show. Center, New Orleans, LA, Thursday, Dec. 4, from 12:30 pm - 1:30 pm. In an effort to relieve clogged highways and bad air in U.S. transportation. services. WorkBoat magazine.
Lake Michigan Ferry Raises Fuel Charge
Cars now can ride cheaper on the Lake Express ferry, according to a Associated Press report, but there is a catch. The cost of transporting a vehicle from Muskegon to Milwaukee is dropping from $59 to $40 during August. But the discount only applies to the 11 p.m. departure out of Muskegon. Passengers who earlier reserved vehicle spaces on these runs at the higher price will receive refunds for the difference. The ferry is also charging passengers a higher fuel surcharge on their tickets. That additional fee went up July 26th from $1.25 to $3.
Austal USA Secures Order for Vehicle-Passenger Ferry
Austal USA has secured an order for the construction of a 192-ft. vehicle-passenger ferry from Milwaukee-based Lake Express LLC. The aluminum catamaran will be the largest vessel so far constructed at the company’s purpose-built shipyard in Mobile, Ala. · The first high-speed vehicle-passenger ferry to operate on Lake Michigan. With capacity for 253 passengers and 46 cars, the Auto Express 58 will be capable of 34 knots. It will link the cities of Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Muskegon in Michigan, crossing Lake Michigan in just over two hours, thus saving passengers a lengthy drive around the southern shore of Lake Michigan, including traffic congestion in Chicago. The service is scheduled to begin by the summer of 2004.
Annand Named Chairman of PVA Subcommittee
Hornblower Marine Services (HMS) is pleased to announce that William Bill Annand, its Director of Marine Operations for Hawaii Superferry, has been appointed Chairman of the Passenger Vessel Association (PVA) High-Speed Subcommittee. Members of the PVA’s High-Speed Subcommittee include operators, designers, builders, equipment suppliers and regulators of high-speed craft. As Director of Marine Operations for Hawaii Superferry, Annand presides over the Alakai, the world’s most celebrated high-speed vessel, providing long-awaited passenger ferry service between Honolulu, O’ahu and Maui. Because the vessel has been controversial, Annand is intimately familiar with hot-button issues of concern to the High-Speed side of the passenger vessel industry and its association.
Austal, MTU: Power on Display in NYC
On April 6 Austal Ships and MTU introduced what it calls the world’s most powerful diesel-powered high-speed catamaran, Spirit of Ontario, in New York. The 284-ft. vessel -- powered by four MTU 20 V 8000 diesel enginesallowing for a loaded speed of 45.7 knots (52 mph/84 kph) – can carry 774 passengers and up to 238 cars or 10 full size trucks. It will be deployed by Canadian American Transportation System between Rochester, NY, and Toronto, ON. According to a survey conducted by the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge…
A Market that has Rediscovered its Rudder
The year 2004 was a watershed year for the passenger vessel industry. The first two American flagged fast passenger and vehicle ferries went into service and equally important was that business was up in all sectors of the marketplace. There is more variety as well. For the first time in several years, new casino boats are being built. One is for an operator in Michigan City, Indiana, a vessel being built at Chicago Bridge & Iron as a replacement boat for a vessel now almost 10 years old. A second is for the Lake Charles, La. Subsidiary of Pinnacle Entertainment, a Las Vegas-based gaming company. This is a 330-ft. by 225-ft. powered barge built by Leevac Shipyards, Jennings, La.
Focus: Fast Ferries Still a Core Market for Austal
Although it has diversified into other vessel types in recent years, Western Australian based shipbuilding group Austal still counts fast ferries as a core market. The last year has been no exception, with the biggest news being the June announcement of an order for what will be the world's largest high-speed multihull vessel. Even more significant than the vessel's 126.7 m length overall is the fact that the cargo-vehicle-passenger ferry will be based on slender stabilized monohull hullform (more commonly referred to as a trimaran). While the experienced high-speed builder from down under touts the commercial value of the project, ramifications for its military aspirations, particularly with the U.S. armed forces, are clear.
Propulsion: Power for a New Breed of RoPax
Building fast RoPax vessels is nothing new for Australia's Austal Ships. The company, founded just 16 years ago, has quickly crafted a reputation as one of the largest and best builders of aluminum craft in the world, and today boasts an annual turnover in excess of $250 million. Spirit of Ontario, however, is in a different league. The ship arrived last month from its birth place Down Under to start work for Canadian American Transportation System on the commuter route between Rochester, NY, and Toronto, ON. Its inaugural route to work took it on tours through the Hawaiian Islands and eventually to Pier 17 at New York City's South Street Seaport…
U.S. Ferry Market Prospects Looking Up
The proliferation of sleek, unique and fast ferries on U.S. waterways is slowly becoming the reality that has been much discussed for decades. While the country does not have an inate "ferry mentality" that is so prevalent in the European culture, in part due to the vastly different geographic challenges, many parts of the country, particularly the heavily congested Northeast corridor, are starting to accept the advantages of relatively fast and efficient water transport. According to a survey conducted by the Volpe National Transportation Systems Center in Cambridge, Mass., high-speed ferries account for only 10 percent of the overall national U.S. ferry fleet.
HMS Global Maritime Extends Westpac Express Contract
HMS Global Maritime (HMSGM) announce the extension of the HSV WestPac Express’ charter with the U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC) and the Third Marine Expeditionary Force, beginning in February 2012. The contract can last up to an additional two years. The HSV WestPac Express has been operated by HMSGM for the past nine years as a high-speed transport vessel for military personnel and equipment over a 1,200 mile range in Asia. The 101-meter vessel, home ported in Okinawa, Japan, can carry 970 troops and 236 vehicles at speeds of 35 knots. Over the past nine years, the HSV WestPac Express has experienced many achievements. One of those achievements came in March…
Annand Named Director of Marine Operations for Superferry
Hornblower Marine Services announced the appointment of Bill Annand as Director of Marine Operations for Hawaii Superferry. Hornblower Marine Services, based in New Albany, Ind., is contracted to operate the long-awaited passenger ferry between Honolulu and the islands of Maui and Kauai. Passenger service is scheduled to begin in August 2007. Annand will initially manage approximately 100 crew members, including unlimited officers, and non-rated union and non0union shipboard staff. He is responsible for daily marine operations including crew management, regulatory compliance, training, budgeting, repairs and maintenance as well as record keeping. Currently Hawaii Superferry is operating a single vessel.
Seaward Provides Bridge Officers for LCS and JHSV Sea Trials
Seaward Services provides bridge officers, including the master and chief engineer, for Builder and Acceptance Trials of the Navy’s Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) and Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV). USNS Choctaw County, the Navy's second Joint High Speed Vessel (JHSV 2), satisfactorily completed Acceptance Trials, May 3 in Mobile, Ala. under the command of Seaward Services’ master, supported by the company’s chief engineer and other deck and engine officers. During Acceptance Trials the ship's major systems and equipment were tested and evaluated, including a full power run and demonstrations of main propulsion engineering and ship control systems, anchoring, emergency and crew support systems. The ship reached speeds of over 40 knots during at-sea trials.
Austal Awarded Another Contract with New World First Ferry
Reflecting the its existing Austal catamarans, Hong Kong based New World First Ferry Services (Macau) Limited [“First Ferry (Macau)”] has signed its third contract with Austal Ships in two years. The latest order is for two 47.5 metre passenger catamarans that will take the total number of vessels built by Austal for the group to seven. Austal subsidiary Image Marine will shortly deliver two 41 metre harbour cruise vessels to New World First Travel Services Limited, a member of NWS Holdings Limited, and will also build the two new catamarans.
US Dredging Invests in American Workers, Safe Navigation Channels
The American Maritime Partnership (AMP), the voice of the domestic maritime industry, has highlighted the U.S. dredging industry’s commitment to build and maintain safe, efficient and cost-effective navigation channels in the nation’s inland waterways and ports. The recent deliveries of four state-of-the-art vessels, constructed by nearly 700 American workers in U.S. shipyards, are a reflection of the U.S. dredging industry’s continued investment in building dredges with increased…
New Scheduled International Cargo Shipping Service
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Saint Lawrence Seaway Development Corporation (SLSDC) today joined the Port of Cleveland in announcing the launch of the Port of Cleveland’s Express Ocean Freight Service. The new service will run between the Port of Cleveland and Antwerp, Belgium via the Saint Lawrence Seaway and is the first regularly scheduled international cargo shipping service to a U.S. port on the Great Lakes in decades. “Our ports play a critical role in freight movement…