Louisiana-based shipbuilder Metal Shark has been awarded a contract to build more high-speed aluminum catamaran passenger vessels for NYC Ferry Service operated by Hornblower.

In August, Metal Shark received orders from Hornblower for four 97'x28', 350-passenger Subchapter K vessels, which are a new and larger platform than the fleet of 150-passenger vessels NYC Ferry currently operates. An additional 85', 150-passenger Subchapter T vessel has also been ordered. The new vessels are currently in production at Metal Shark’s Franklin, La., waterfront shipyard, with accelerated delivery timelines calling for all five vessels to be delivered in 2018.

NYC Ferry’s new K vessels are designed by Incat Crowther and powered by twin 12-cylinder, 1,400-hp Baudouin 12M26.3 diesel engines, coupled to ZF Marine ZF3050 gearboxes and turning custom 5-bladed Michigan Wheel propellers. The larger Rockaway-class vessels boast an operating speed of 24 knots.

The new orders represent a continuation of Metal Shark’s relationship with Hornblower and NYC Ferry. In July 2016, Metal Shark was chosen to build six 85', 150-passenger, Incat Crowther-designed aluminum catamaran ferries for NYC Ferry. Between April and June of this year, Metal Shark delivered all six vessels on time, with an average per-unit build time of 10 months.

“As proud as we are of our previous record of on-time deliveries to Hornblower, it’s even more of an honor that the client returned to us to produce these significantly larger vessels under even more challenging timelines,” Chris Allard, CEO of Metal Shark said in a statement announcing the new orders. “Over the past few months we have been working closely with Hornblower to meet the demands of these accelerated-delivery orders.”