An artist’s rendering of Crowley’s new Commitment Class, LNG-Powered, ConRo Vessel. Image (c) Crowley Maritime Corp.
Crowley Maritime Corp. has announced that VT Halter Marine, Inc. in Pascagoula, Mississippi has cut steel on the first of two new LNG-powered ConRo ships for Crowley’s liner services group.
“We have waited with great anticipation for the Commitment Class build program to start,” said John Hourihan, senior vice president and general manager, Puerto Rico/Caribbean liner services. “These new ships will embody superior technology and construction and we are anxious to get them into service for our partners in Puerto Rico.”
The Commitment Class ships, a combination container – Roll-On/Roll-Off, have been designed to maximize the carrying capacity of of 53-foot, 102-inch-wide containers, offering the most cubic cargo capacity in the trade, according to Crowley. The ships will be 219.5 meters long, 32.3 meters wide, have a deep draft of 10 meters, and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 metric tonnes. Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 TEUs, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles in an enclosed Ro/Ro garage. The ships will be fitted with MAN Diesel & Turbo LNG-fueled 2-stroke ME GI main engines and three MAN 9L28/32DF auxiliary engines. The design was developed by Wartsila Ship Design in conjunction with Crowley subsidiary Jensen Maritime, a leading Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm.
The Commitment Class ships will replace Crowley’s towed triple-deck barge fleet, which has served the U.S. – Puerto Rico trade with Jones Act service continuously since the early 1970s, Crowley says. The new ships, named El Coquí (ko-kee) and Taíno (tahy-noh), are scheduled for delivery in the second and fourth quarter of 2017, respectively.
“VT Halter Marine is pleased and excited to announce the first steel plate cut which launches the official start of construction for these new LNG ConRo ships. These vessels signify how important the Jones Act is to Americans employed in the marine industry. We are most grateful for Crowley’s continued confidence in VT Halter Marine,” said Bill Skinner, CEO, VT Halter Marine.
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