On October 6, a new passenger and vehicle ferry that will service Prince
of Wales Island, Alaska floated
for the first time. Elliott Bay Design Group completed
the contract design of this 197-ft. ferry and has served as Owner's Representative throughout vessel construction at Dakota Creek Industries in Anacortes, Wash.
Since the launching, the vessel has been receiving finishing touches with sea trials set to begin in early November. Features ferry passengers have to look forward too include inside and covered outside seating areas, children's playroom, a library/reading room, and coffee shop. Special attention was also given to the hull design acoustics, with the goal of providing passengers a comfortable ride. To help make this goal a reality, EBDG utilized computer modeling and its expertise in seakeeping analysis to optimize the hull form. Making it all possible, twin Caterpillar 3512B diesel engines, providing 3,000 hp, will drive two four-bladed CP Hundestad propellers through Reintjes reduction gears. The design also features an electric bowthruster, a bulbous bow, and rolling chocks to reduce motion and improve passenger comfort. When she's delivered in mid-December, the Prince of Wales will carry 150 passengers, 30 vehicles, or a combination of cars and up to 10 large freight trailers, and will make one daily roundtrip to Ketchikan, significantly increasing service for island residents.