St. Johns Ship Building chosen to build Skanska barge

PALATKA, Fla. — St. Johns Ship Building, based here, announced this week it has won a contract to construct a custom crane spud barge for Skanska, one of the largest construction companies in the world. This is the first contract St. Johns has signed with Skanska USA, a national construction company with 7,000 employees in the U.S. and 2010 revenues of $4.8 billion.

“In a highly competitive environment, Skanska chose St. Johns because they saw our previous work, spoke to our customers and recognized that we have earned a reputation for delivering top quality vessels,” said St. Johns General Manager, Bobby Barfield, in a prepared statement. Barfield also cited the yard’s strategic location as a major reason for landing the contract. The Palatka yard features a 98-acre facility and a 1,200 ton dry dock on St. Johns River, easily accessible to the Atlantic Ocean and Jacksonville via the Intracoastal Waterway.

The 150-ft barge will become part of Skanska’s core fleet of vessels and has been custom engineered to accommodate a variety of sizes of cranes. The vessel will initially be outfitted with a Liebherr LR1300 330 ton crane and will support the Pier 5 expansion project in Norfolk Va. The barge will be built with grade A50 material which provides 50,000 pounds of tensile strength per square inch and will result in a lighter, stronger vessel.

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