Eastern Shipbuilding Group (ESG) has delivered the first of three new 320'x70'x21'6" Ollis-class Ferries to the New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) Staten Island Ferry Division.

The Michael H. Ollis, Hull 219, departed ESG’s Port St. Joe Facility fully certified and passenger ready.

Dann Ocean Towing’s Colonel is towing the ferry from Port St. Joe, Fla., to New York City. The trip will take approximately 12 days. Upon arrival in New York, the ferry will be staged at Caddell Dry Dock for cleaning and another round of trials and training. The ferry is scheduled to begin transporting passengers in the fall.

The ferries have a passenger seating capacity of 2,551 and a total passenger capacity of 4,500. Each ferry will carry a crew of 16.

The three Ollis-class double-ended ferries, which have 13' drafts, are from a design provided by Elliott Bay Design Group, with each ferry featuring four 2,495 hp at 750 rpm Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) L12ME23B EPA Tier 4 marine propulsion engines with two engines powering one ABS Reintjes DUP 3000 P combining gear and one ABS 36 RV6 ECS/285-2 Voith Schneider propeller at each end of the vessel.

Ship’s service power is provided by three ABS, EPA Tier 3 marine continuous duty diesel generator sets, Caterpillar C18 driving 480 V, 60 Hz, 3-phase generators rated at 425 kW at 0.8 P.F. at 1,800 rpm.

“We are proud to deliver Staten Island Ferry MV SSG Michael H. Ollis to New York City fully certified and passenger-ready. It is the first vessel of the modernized fleet and boasts the most advanced technology and environmental engineering in the maritime industry,” Joey D’Isernia, president of ESG, said in a statement. “It’s been an honor for Eastern to build this class named after one of our fallen heroes and deliver state of the art vessels for the world’s busiest passenger-ferry route. This iconic vessel transports millions of tourists and residents every year. It is a critical maritime infrastructure project that was proudly built by hardworking American ship designers and builders,”

ESG is providing regulatory and detailed production engineering, vessel construction, and delivery of the three new Ollis-class Ferries. The ferries have been constructed in ESG’s Allanton, Fla., yard. ESG’s newest facility in Port St. Joe, Fla., performed the outfitting, testing, and trials tasks. The vessels have been a local attraction and significant source of economic development in the Gulf region.

The new ferries are larger, reflect modern technology, and will operate more safely in extreme weather conditions, ESG said. They feature popular design elements of past Staten Island ferries and new customer-service amenities such as more comfortable seating and phone-charging outlets and an oval upper-deck promenade that will for the first time serve as an outdoor “walking track” for ferry riders. The ferries have the latest in marine technology for energy efficiency and environmental friendliness. There are design features on the vessels that are part of the emergency response plan with the city. Lessons learned from 9/11 were built into this fleet and they can be connected to New York fire vessels, also built by ESG, to support evacuations and rescue.

The new ferries are ABS classed Maltese Cross A1 Ferry Service, River Service, AMS Notation and USCG-certified Subchapter H.

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