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City Seeks Shipyards to Build 3 New Staten Island Ferry Boats

By Nicholas Rizzi | May 19, 2016 10:19am
 The city released a bid to get a shipyard to build the three new Ollis class of ferry boats.
New Staten Island Ferry Drawings
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STATEN ISLAND — The city is seeking a shipyard to build the three new Staten Island Ferry boats set to replace some of the aging fleet.

The Department of Transportation released a bid Wednesday for detail design and construction for the three new 4,500 passenger boats, called the Ollis class of ships.

The new boats will be designed similar to the Kennedy class of ferries with the first being officially dubbed the Staff Sgt. Michael Ollis boat, named after the Staten Island soldier who died shielding a Polish fighter he didn't know from a suicide bomber in Afghanistan in 2013, by Mayor Bill de Blasio.

The new boats, which got a $328 million boost from the mayor in the city's budget, will include indoor and outdoor seating, a snack bar, a hurricane deck and more, according to designs released by the DOT in the bid.

While the drawings the DOT attached are not final designs, the shape of the boat, layout of spaces, seating arrangements and other major features laid out can't be changed without city approval, according to the bid.

Details of the boats, including the seat styles, will be up to the winning shipyard to design, a spokesman for the DOT said.

For the seat design, the shipyard will use the input from the nearly 2,000 riders who took a survey last year on what style they prefer, the spokesman said.

The new boats will replace the aging Andrew J. Barberi, Samuel I. Newhouse and the John F. Kennedy ferries and will be made to handle extreme weather situations, the city previously said.

The Ollis boat is expected to set sail in 2019, with the second in 2019 and the third in early 2020, the city previously said.

The names for the other boats have yet to be picked and several people have started pushes to snag them as memorials for notable Staten Islanders. 

The deadline for shipyards to submit to the bid is Aug. 31.