A rendering of the new passenger ferry (Image: Damen Shipyards)
Damen Shipyards Group is to build two passenger ferries for Canadian operator BC Ferries as part of its ongoing fleet renewal initiative.
Damen beat 28 shipyards, including five from Canada, to secure the tender to construct the two 81-metre vessels at its yard in Galati, Romania. The ferries will be able to carry up to 300 passengers and crew and around 44 vehicles when they enter service in 2020.
Damen has an agreement with Point Hope Shipyards in Victoria, British Columbia to perform any warranty work locally on these vessels.
“We are extremely proud to be constructing these two ferries for British Columbia,” said Damen Leo Postma, Damen sales manager. “Furthermore, we are looking forward to further developing our existing relationship with BC Ferries by building safe, reliable high quality ferries contributing to BC Ferries’ vessel replacement programme.”
BC Ferries’ newbuilds will replace the 59-year old North Island Princess and the 53-year old Quadra Queen II. They will be able to cover many of the company’s routes to the Northern and Southern Gulf Islands off the coast of Vancouver.
“This is a design-build, fixed-priced contract that provides BC Ferries with substantial guarantees related to delivery dates, performance criteria, cost certainty and quality construction,” said Mark Wilson, BC Ferries’ Vice President of Engineering. “A key objective of BC Ferries’ fleet renewal program and the acquisition of these two minor class vessels is to achieve capital and operating cost savings and efficiencies through an overall class and standardization strategy.”