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Eastern Shipbuilding Delivers Second Staten Island Ferry, Sandy Ground

sandy ground
Sandy Ground out on sea trials (Eastern Shipbuilding)

Published Dec 8, 2021 6:22 PM by The Maritime Executive

Today, Eastern Shipbuilding Group, Inc. (ESG) announced the completion of the second Ollis Class Staten Island Ferry for the City of New York Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) Staten Island Ferry Division. The Sandy Ground, Hull 220, departed ESG’s Port St. Joe Shipyard passenger ready with the USCG Certificate of Inspection and the ABS Class Certificates in hand.

“I am pleased to announce the newest Staten Island Ferry Sandy Ground is being delivered to New York City. This vessel honors our nation’s African-American heritage and will tell the story of the landmark Sandy Ground community,” said Joey D’Isernia, President of Eastern Shipbuilding Group. “These incredible vessels are receiving international recognition for their superior design and capabilities. We thank our partners for their dedication and exceptional quality in the production of these ferries.”

Dann Ocean Towing’s Sarah Dann is towing the ferry from Eastern’s shipyard in Port St. Joe, FL to New York City, NY. The trip will take approximately 14 days. Upon arrival in New York, the ferry will be staged at Caddell Dry Dock for cleaning and another round of trials and training. It is scheduled to begin transporting passengers in 2022. The third ferry, Dorothy Day, is scheduled to be delivered in 2022.

The new Staten Island Ollis Class Ferries series are named after fallen soldier of the US Army 10th Mountain Division at Fort Drum, 'Climb to Glory', Army Staff Sgt. Michael H. Ollis. Ollis, a Staten Island native, was killed shielding fellow soldiers from a suicide bomber in Afghanistan on August 28, 2013, while serving during Operation Enduring Freedom. Hull 219, the first of the series, is named in his honor. Last week, the SSG Michael H. Ollis won the internationally recognized Boat of the Year award.

The Sandy Ground is named after one of America’s first African American settlements, established by freed slaves on Staten Island’s South Shore nearly two hundred years ago, which became the anchor for African Americans living on Staten Island. Sandy Ground’s history as a freed slave community dates to 1828, when Capt. John Jackson, an African American ferry boat operator became the first African American to own property on Staten Island, buying property in what is now the South Shore community of Rossville. Over time, Sandy Ground was settled by African American oystermen and New York’s booming oyster trade allowed residents there to own their own property, boats, and businesses.

ESG is providing regulatory and detailed production engineering, vessel construction, and delivery of the three new Staten Island Ollis Class Ferries. The ferries have been constructed in ESG’s Allanton yard. ESG’s newest facility in Port St. Joe, Florida performed the outfitting, testing, and trials tasks. The vessels have been a local attraction and significant source of economic development in the Gulf Region.

The new ferries are larger, reflect modern technology, and will operate more safely in extreme weather conditions. They feature popular design elements of past Staten Island Ferries and new customer-service amenities such as more comfortable seating and phone-charging outlets and an oval upper-deck promenade that will for the first time serve as an outdoor “walking track” for ferry riders. They have the latest in marine technology for energy efficiency and environmental friendliness. There are design features on the vessels that are part of the emergency response plan with the city. Lessons from 9/11 were built into this fleet and they can be connected to the New York fire vessels, also built by Eastern Shipbuilding Group, to support evacuations and rescue.

The three Ollis Class double ended 4,500 passenger ferries, are from a design provided by Elliott Bay Design Group, with each ferry featuring four ABS Electro-Motive Diesel (EMD) L12ME23B @ 750 rpm EPA Tier 4 marine propulsion engines with two engines powering one ABS Reintjes DUP 3000 P combining gear and one ABS 36 RV6 ECS/285-2 Voith Schneider Propeller at each end of the vessel. Power generation is provided by three ABS, EPA Tier 3 marine continuous duty diesel generator sets, Caterpillar C18 driving 480 V, 60 Hz, 3-phase generators rated at 425 kW at 0.8 P.F. @ 1800 rpm.

The products and services herein described in this press release are not endorsed by The Maritime Executive.