Design Completed for Steamship Authority Ferry

A new 1,000-seat double-ended ferry will soon be sailing the waters between Woods Hole and Martha's Vineyard, Mass., replacing the Islander, which has been making the run for more than half a century. The yet-unnamed ferry, whose contract design was recently completed by Seattle's Elliott Bay Design Group for the Woods Hole, Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket Steamship Authority, is expected to begin service in May 2006.

"Our ridership requires a combination of island ambiance, economic operation, and a high standard of environmental friendliness and reliability," said Captain Ed Jackson, SSA project manager.

A "quiet room" provides riders a tranquil area for working or relaxing, and a snack bar and dining area offer food service. Two elevators permit access to all passenger decks for mobility- impaired riders. Directions in Design of St. Louis is designing the interior decor of all passenger spaces. The enclosed vehicle deck offers protection from the steep chop frequently encountered on the seven mile crossing and includes two lift decks, allowing a total automobile capacity of up to 80 vehicles in seven car lanes. With the lift decks raised to the overhead, the 255 ft. by 64 ft. freight deck provides more than 1,200 ft of parking lanes with 16 ft. of clear height. The vessel features EMD main propulsion engines, each developing 3,000 bhp at 900 rpm, and Reintjes WAK 3445K 3.036:1 reduction gears.

Design operating speed is 16 knots, permitting hourly departures from Woods Hole and Martha's Vineyard.

A contract award is expected in November.

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Maritime Reporter Magazine, page 9,  Nov 2004 Ed Jackson

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