New ferry for Bell Island due in 2016

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The provincial government made official this afternoon news that a new ferry is on its way for Bell Island.

Jan van Hogerwou, Damen's manager for North American operations, Conception Bay East MHA David Brazil and Transportation and Works Minister Nick McGrath at a news conference today officially announcing a new ferry for Bell Island. — Photo by Keith Gosse/The Telegram

Transportation and Works Minister Nick McGrath said he expects Damen Shipyards of Norway will have the 80-metre ferry ready to make trips between the island and Portugal Cove-St. Philip's by February 2016.

The ship's specifications are identical to that of a new ferry announced for Fogo Island and Change Islands last month that Damen Shipyards is also building. The vessel, valued at $49.5 million, will be able to carry 200 passengers and 60 vehicles.

Conception Bay East MHA David Brazil said a more capable ferry service will open up economic opportunities for Bell Island. The new ferry will have expanded capacity in comparison to the vessel it will replace, the MV Beaumont Hamel. The MV Flanders will continue to serve the island alongside the new ferry.

Jan van Hogerwou, Damen's manager for North American operations, told reporters his company expects to have a noticeable presence in Newfoundland and Labrador, particularly with respect to oil and gas business in St. John's. He also expressed the company’s interest in working with local businesses from the marine and ocean technology sectors.

The province previously announced plans to spend $10 million on wharf upgrades necessary to accommodate a new vessel.



Organizations: Damen Shipyards, North American

Geographic location: Bell Island, Norway, Portugal Cove Fogo Island Change Islands Newfoundland and Labrador St. John's

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Recent comments

  • david
    December 17, 2013 - 09:54

    Headline in yesterday's National Post...."After sinking $20-million into Soviet car ferry, Newfoundland sells ‘rust bucket’ (the MV Nonia) for just $76,000" .....Muskrat Falls, full speed ahead!

  • Don
    December 16, 2013 - 20:15

    Good 1st step to improve Ferry service. Now if they can make the guys working the Ferry take a 1/2 hour lunch break -like everyone else - instead of the 2 hour break they now take -- we will have it made.

  • Batman
    December 16, 2013 - 16:47

    It's time for this government to get serious about another resettlement program. It is costing way too much to keep people in places like this.

  • darrell
    December 16, 2013 - 14:03

    Let's keep track how many times this announcement will be announced....right up to the next election of course. Today's announcement is #2.

  • Leonard
    December 16, 2013 - 14:03

    Here we go again...another project awarded to a company overseas, with no provision for Newfoundland content. Funny how the government requires oil and gas companies to provide for local content....but our government ignores those stipulations for their own projects. Too bad...a few local suppliers have missed an opportunity. Again...our government ignoring their own Blue Book promises!

  • Jack
    December 16, 2013 - 13:58

    The Newfoundland and Labrador Government needs to focus on building a bridge connecting Bell Island to Portugal Cove-St. Phillip's or Bay Roberts as opposed to getting new ferries.