Revival of Baltimore shipyard underway

The new owners of the Sparrows Point Shipyard in Baltimore have won a $2.3 million contract to scrap two aging Navy ships. 

North American Ship Recycling, a wholly owned subsidiary of Barletta Willis LLC, won the Marad contract to dispose of the Lauderdale, a World War II troop transport ship, and the freighter Mormacmoon. Both ships are part of the James River Reserve Fleet, known as the “ghost fleet,” that includes some 60 ships moldering in Virginia.

While the ship-breaking contract will add a modest 50 workers, owner Vincent Barletta said it is a first step.

In addition to ship breaking, Barletta has plans to make full use of the sprawling shipyard. Sparrow Point had faltered under its previous owner, Baltimore Marine Industries, and was sold at auction last year to Boston-based Barletta Willis for $9.75 million. 

                    —Kathy Bergren Smith 


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