MARAD Selects Construction Manager for Multi-Mission Vessel
The U.S. Maritime Administrator RADM Mark H. Buzby, USN (Ret.) has announced TOTE Services as the vessel construction manager for the newest class of training ship, the National Security Multi-Mission Vessel (NSMV).
TOTE Services was selected by MARAD to select a shipyard and oversee the detailed design, construction, testing and delivery of the vessel.
The NSMV is a new class of purpose-built ships to provide for the replacement of the current training ships at the State Maritime Academies. The training ships are primarily used to meet regulatory requirements for training standards and to offer at-sea training experiences. The NSMV will feature numerous instructional spaces and a full training bridge and will have space for up to 600 cadets.
Along with serving as an educational platform, the NSMV will also be available to support federal government efforts in response to national and international disasters such as hurricanes and earthquakes. In this role, the NSMV will be equipped to support major federal relief and response efforts, providing hospital facilities, a helicopter landing pad, and berthing for up to 1,000 first responders and recovery workers. The vessel’s roll-on/roll-off ramp and crane to facilitate container storage capabilities will enable it to provide critical supplies to damaged port facilities.
TOTE Services will issue a request for proposal to shipyards and is expected to select a shipyard within six months. The vessel is expected to be delivered in fall 2022.
“The U.S. shipbuilding industry is vital to America’s economic strength and security,” said Buzby. “The selection of TOTE Services to work with a U.S. shipyard to deliver this class of vessels is an investment in our nation’s vital maritime infrastructure and underscores our mission to foster and promote the U.S. Merchant Marine.”
The 2017 National Defense Authorization Act directed MARAD to “provide for an entity other than the Maritime Administration to contract for the construction of the NSMV.” This procurement process has allowed MARAD to leverage existing marketplace expertise and target companies experienced in the production of innovative U.S.-built ships.
Since 2015, TOTE Services has overseen construction and management of the world’s first LNG powered container ships, activated U.S. training ships to support disaster relief following Hurricane Maria and managed various MARAD vessels, including six fast sealift ships.