Polish shipbuilder Remontowa Shipbuilding has successfully completed the steel cutting of BC Ferries’ second of three Intermediate-class ferries (ICF).
The new dual-fuel ferries, which are capable of running either on liquefied natural gas (LNG) or diesel, will replace ageing ships in the fleet.
These new-builds are part of BC Ferries’ vessel replacement plan to standardise its ships for greater interoperability, the company stated.
BC Ferries president and CEO Mike Corrigan said: "These new ferries will not only reduce our impact on the environment, but will also bring us one step closer to standardising our fleet for better interoperability on all of our routes.
"Having these new ferries that are the right size for their routes will create greater efficiencies and in turn, save costs. We look forward to welcoming the new vessels into our fleet."
BC Ferries will replace Queen of Burnaby and Queen of Nanaimo with two new ships designed to accommodate 145 vehicles and 600 passengers.
The third ship will be used to strengthen peak and shoulder season services on the Southern Gulf Islands route, alongside providing refit relief.
Delivery of the first and second vessel in the series is expected to be in August 2016 and October 2016, respectively, while the third ICF is scheduled for February 2017.
In July 2014, Remontowa Shipbuilding received contracts worth $165m to construct these three vessels.
Image: BC Ferries programme manager Dan Riis and Remontowa Shipbuilding CEO Andrzej Woijtkiewicz. Photo: courtesy of British Columbia Ferry Services Inc.