Philly Shipyard Returns to Work with MARAD Repair Contract

Antares arrives at Philly Shipyard (Insight Aerial Photography / Philly Shipyard)

By The Maritime Executive 08-02-2019 05:36:13

Aker-owned Philly Shipyard has begun work on its first contract to perform modernization, repair and maintenance work on a government vessel, the ro/ro steamship Antares.

The 1972-built Antares was constructed in Germany as a container ship for Sea-Land and converted into a ro/ro at Avondale for the U.S. Navy in 1980. As a military sealift ship, she carried cargo for both wars in Iraq and for a variety of peacekeeping operations. Today she is owned by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration (MARAD) as part of the Ready Reserve Force, and she is managed by TOTE Services. She is at Philly for her routine five-year drydocking.

Philly has not had a working project since the delivery of the Panamax boxship Kaimana Hila in March, and the repairs on the Antares mark its return to operating activity.  

“I am thrilled and honored that Philly Shipyard has been selected for the Antares repair,” said Philly Shipyard President and CEO Steinar Nerbovik. “It is an important milestone for the yard as we transition into a mix of commercial and government work, and it has been exciting to recall some of our skilled men and women for this opportunity. We are confident that we will be able to deliver on our commitments to MARAD and TOTE and are thankful for this opportunity to serve.”

Work on the SS Antares is expected to last approximately two months. Philly Shipyard says that its objective is to win similar repair and maintenance contracts in order to continuously utilize its drydocks as part of its plan to reconstitute its workforce.

Philly is also working with Vard on a proposal for the U.S. Navy's Common Hull Auxiliary Multi-Mission Platform (CHAMP) program. The yard is one of four selected by the U.S. Navy to develop a proposed design for the new future fleet auxiliary. If the bid is successful, and if the program is fully implemented, Philly could secure work on a major series project of up to 60 vessels.