ELLSWORTH – Is the Cruise Ship Industry in a growth stage?
Due to the increasing number of cruise ships visiting the Portland port of call this year, Portland Officials have decided to upgrade their Passenger Boarding Systems to a hydraulically adjustable, ADA compliant aluminum system. In all, 70-thousand cruise ship passengers and 22-thousand crew members from 69 ships will visit Portland Harbor this year. Instead of the old gangway system, Portland will now have a boarding solution that is ADA compliant in terms of leveling.
Earlier this year Superior Welding and Fabrication, Inc d/b/a Superior Docks in Ellsworth, Maine was awarded the contract to design and build a new ADA compliant passenger boarding system for the 1172 foot Maine State Pier in Portland Maine. They teamed up with Dan McGraw P.E. of Atlantic Engineering in Surry, Maine to design and engineer a custom system that would take into consideration and utilize the attributes of the existing pier. This 200 foot system consists of four mechanical platforms that are arranged to be powered by hydraulic lifts in order to move with the tides. With a 10-12 foot tide, it is calculated that the platforms will only have to be adjusted 2 or 3 times each tide. The system is being built to ride along the existing crane tracks on the pier in order to be in position for each cruise ship and adjust to meet varying door heights and configurations.
This is not the first passenger boarding system manufactured by Superior Docks. Superior Docks has built passenger boarding systems for the Jacksonville International Airport in Jacksonville ,Florida, the Manhattan and Brooklyn Cruise Terminals in New York, the City Water Taxi and Fan Pier in Boston, the Intrepid Museum and City Water Taxi in New York City and to service the cruise ships that visit Bar Harbor, Maine.
The Bar Harbor systems were also hydraulically operated, but rather then setting on a pier they were mounted to the barge decks which would park next to the cruise ship, load the tenders and ferry the passengers to shore. Bar Harbor still remains the top cruise ship destination in Maine, hosting 118 ships for the 2010 season.
Portland is rapidly growing as a destination hot spot. With this new boarding system in place, Portland will be able to host many different size cruise ships, with confidence that the passengers will have a good debarking and boarding experience.
Superior Welding & Fabrications
Contact Name: Richard Newman, CEO
Telephone Number: (207)664-2121