Damen Shipyards Group marks 20 years of ferry construction

Damen Shipyards Group marks 20 years of ferry construction
Damen Shipyards Group
Damen’s first project in the ferry sector was the construction of four River Runner ferries for the Dordrecht Waterbus Service

Damen Shipyards Group has marked the 20th anniversary of its ferries department. The dedicated department was first established at the beginning of the millennium, when the shipbuilder decided to formalise its activities in the sector.

“We could see there was high demand for fast ferries in countries with a lot of water close to urban environment – Australia and Singapore were leading the way at the time – and we saw the potential this could have in the Netherlands,” said Piet Hein Noordenbos, former product director of ferries at Damen. “It seemed an ideal way to contribute towards the growth of Damen.”

Damen then entered the market with the acquisition of a license to construct the Australian River Runner design. The company’s first project was the construction of four River Runners in the Netherlands for the Dordrecht Waterbus Service. This was shortly followed by the acquisition of its own yard in Singapore, along with the design for the Flying Cat 40. Damen would later develop this design into the Damen Fast Ferries 4010 and 4212.

In 2009, the company expanded its product portfolio to include larger road ferries alongside fast ferries and has since delivered ferries of diverse types and sizes across the world.

Among recent developments has been the E3 programme, which has seen Damen construct several hybrid and fully electric ferries. One such project included the delivery of seven fully electric 2306E3 Ferries for Arriva in Copenhagen, Denmark, along with docking and charging infrastructure.

“We are very proud of what we have achieved over the last two decades,” said Henk Grunstra, current product director of ferries. “The world of maritime public transport has changed considerably in this time and we have changed with it, developing our product portfolio and production processes accordingly. We are looking forward to doing the same in the coming decades, responding to the market’s calls for increasing connectivity and sustainability and playing a leading role in the creation of waterborne public transport fit for the future.” 

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Alex Smith
By Alex Smith
11 May 2020

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