PORTLAND, Ore. – Vigor Industrial announced today it has reached an agreement with Chinese firm Daoda Marine Heavy Industry Company to purchase a new floating drydock for $40 million. At 960’ long, the company said, with an inside width of 186’ and a lifting capacity of 80,000 long tons, “it will be the largest floating drydock in the United States.”
“We decided now is the time to buy because demand to service large vessels is growing and large drydock capacity in proximity to the US West Coast has diminished,” said Vigor Industrial CEO Frank Foti in a statement.
The new drydock, set to be stationed here in Portland, will be 300 feet longer than the largest drydock Vigor currently owns, the company said. It will be one and half times wider and will be able to lift more than triple the weight.
This new capacity will allow Vigor to service the incoming generation of the US Navy’s Military Sealift Command dry cargo/ammunition ships, according to a press release, which are replacing some smaller MSC ammunition, combat stores and fuel ships. The drydock will also be large enough to service private vessels, including post-Panamax cargo ships and cruise ships, and help Vigor “meet growing demand from the Arctic as oil and gas exploration and other ship operators take advantage of longer ice-free summers.”
DDHI will build the drydock at its facility in Jiangsu Provence, China, for delivery by March 2014. It will be towed to Portland in three pieces for assembly, and its first job will likely be to prepare Vigor’s largest Portland-based drydock for use at Vigor’s Seattle facility. This would provide the Seattle shipyard with a new capacity to service Panamax-sized vessels.