Scandlines and P + S shipyards are celebrating another milestone on their way to putting their two new builds into service. Today the “Berlin” came into contact with the element water for the first time before some 150 guests from the world of politics and business at the P + S shipyard in Stralsund. At 10.55 a.m. the premier of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania, Erwin Sellering, gave the official signal for the launching of the new vessel in the presence of Bengt Pihl, CEO of Scandlines and Axel Schulz, Sales Director of P + S Werften GmbH. The ferry “Berlin” is due to go into service in late March 2012 on the Rostock-Gedser route. In May 2012 it is scheduled to be followed by the ferry “Copenhagen”, which is also under construction at the P + S shipyard in Stralsund.
Yesterday, 1 December, the “Berlin” left the shipbuilding hangar for the first time in what is known as the roll-out. This was followed today by the launch, the ship’s first contact with the water. “These new vessels are our biggest and most important project for the future and reflect the growing role of the eastern corridor for passenger and sea-freight traffic”, said Bengt Pihl, CEO of Scandlines. Axel Schulz, Sales Director of P + S Werften GmbH emphasised: “We are proud that this newbuild project is being realised at P + S shipyards. It is a demonstration of our capabilities and the result of systematically realigning our activities towards specialised shipbuilding. These vessels also send a vital signal for the competitiveness of Mecklenburg-West Pomerania as a business location.”
The shipping company Scandlines is investing a total of â‚¬230 million on new ships and on extending the ports in Rostock and Gedser. The two new superferries offer significantly more space for passengers and vehicles. They can carry either 460 cars or 90 lorries as well as up to 1,500 passengers, more than doubling previous capacities on the Rostock-Gedser route. Fuel consumption and emissions will be reduced to a minimum – for the benefit of both economic efficiency and the environment. The interior design of the new ships comes courtesy of French architects AIA. The ferries’ catering concept includes a buffet restaurant, Ã la carte restaurant, cafeteria and a self-service restaurant/cafÃ©, as well as snack and drinks vending machines. In addition, customers can also make use of a shopping and gaming area on board and even fully equipped conference rooms.