Updated as of 7/27/2020.
Casco Bay Island Transit District (Casco Bay Lines) is currently in the process of updating a portion of its existing fleet of vessels. Casco Bay Lines maintains a Transit Asset Management Plan to track the inventory of transit assets (including vessels), their condition and costs associated with their maintenance. This is common practice for any business seeking to plan and budget for the inevitable depreciation and increased maintenance costs of their assets. Typically, Casco Bay Lines passenger vessels have a “useful life” of approximately 30 years. While they can still be utilized safely beyond that point, repairs and maintenance become prohibitively expensive. The Casco Bay Lines Transit Asset Management Plan identified that the Machigonne II is beyond useful life and the Maquoit is approaching the same status.
As part of a long-range planning process undertaken by the Casco Bay Lines Board of Directors (Board) between 2015 and 2016, the Board agreed to a number of goals and priorities, one of which was to secure funding for the design and construction of a new ferry. With the support of the Federal Transit Administration, the State of Maine, the City of Portland and the Portland Area Comprehensive Transportation System (PACTS), Casco Bay Lines has, as of February 2019, secured sufficient funds to design and construct one new vessel.
Based on demand and facility constraints, the Maine Public Utilities Commission currently allows for Casco Bay Lines to utilize a fleet of no more than five vessels, four for regular operations and one spare. To help determine which of the current vessels should be replaced with a new vessel, and to assist with the Schedule Analysis Project, Casco Bay Lines issued a Request for Proposals (RFP) for a qualified consulting firm to evaluate the current fleet and schedule and make recommendations to the Board.
This process, referred to as the Schedule/Fleet Analysis, included historical data analysis, a survey of all users of the ferry system, an open house at the Casco Bay Lines terminal, and public meetings on each island. Public feedback and data collected was utilized by the consulting firm to assist in their evaluation. Following a presentation from the consulting firm with their recommendation of which vessel should be replaced first, at the public Board meeting on May 17, 2018, the Board voted to use existing funds for a new vessel for Peaks Island service and to move forward in seeking additional funding for a new Down Bay Islands’ vessel.
Casco Bay Lines developed an RFP to select a vessel designer, inviting over eleven firms to consider submitting a proposal, and advertising the RFP. Four firms submitted proposals, two were short listed for interviews and Elliott Bay Design Group (EBDG) from Seattle, Washington, was selected. Casco Bay Lines entered into a contract with EBDG in May of 2018 and they began the work of assessing the vessel requirements using results from the fleet analysis work done by KPFF.
Casco Bay Lines invited members of the Board and the public to join a Vessel Advisory Committee (VAC) and conducted a public kick-off meeting with VAC and EBDG on May 22, 2018. EBDG then worked to determine possible vessel configurations that met the needs of Casco Bay Lines and conformed to the various regulatory requirements and operational constraints. A second VAC meeting was held in October 2018 for EBDG to share progress and seek additional input.
An informational public meeting was held on March 23, 2019, to discuss capacity for the new vessel being designed for Peaks Island service. Representatives from Casco Bay Lines presented an update on the current status of the Fleet Evaluation Project and the new vessel design. The public had an opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions at this meeting. A copy of the presentation can be found here and an audio recording of the meeting can be found here*. Answers to questions posed at the meeting were posted in the Frequently Asked Questions section of this page below.
The Board took up consideration and action specific to capacity guidance for a new Peaks Island vessel at the public Board meeting on May 23, 2019. Following a request by the Board, Casco Bay Lines staff prepared the following materials in advance: Commitment Letter from City of Portland – May 7, 2019 , CBITD New Peaks Island Vessel 30 Year Financial Pro Forma, Executive Summary & Analysis – May 20, 2019, and CBITD Staff Memo: Vehicle Reservation Update – May 17, 2019.
In recognition of the concerns raised by a group of residents, an amendment was offered during the May 23, 2019, meeting to restrict passenger capacity of the new vessel to a maximum of 499 passengers on outbound trips to Peaks Island and a maximum passenger capacity allowed by final vessel design for inbound trips to Portland. Ultimately, the Board approved the amendment and voted 9 to 2 to provide staff with their approval to proceed in designing a vessel with capacity no greater than 599 passengers and 15 vehicles.
As of May 2020, the vessel design process remains in the preliminary stages. EBDG has completed their analysis and compiled their comprehensive recommendations, including size, capacity, hull shape and propulsion with the evaluation of various hull configurations and propulsion systems in the form of a Preliminary Design Report (PDR).
An informational public meeting was held on March 7, 2020, on Peaks Island to review the proposed design in the PDR. Representatives from Casco Bay Lines presented an update on the current status of the Fleet Evaluation Project and the new vessel design. The public had an opportunity to provide feedback and ask questions at this meeting. Materials shared in advance of the public meeting included the following: PDR Overview Memo, Preliminary Design Report, Propulsion Selection Study, Battery Optimization Memo.
As part of the March 7, 2020, presentation, Casco Bay Lines staff shared plans to seek funding from outside sources for a 900 kWh diesel electric hybrid propulsion system for the new vessel, utilizing innovative battery technology, in place of a conventional diesel mechanical propulsion system.
Not only does Casco Bay Lines estimate this would eliminate up to 800 metric tons of CO2 emissions annually, the propulsion system would dramatically improve the rider and neighbor experience by eliminating exhaust fumes, excessive engine noise and vibrations found on existing vessels.
A copy of the presentation made at the meeting can be found here.. An audio recording of the meeting can be found here**. Answers to questions posed at the meeting were posted in the Frequently Asked Questions section of this page below.
EBDG’s recommendations, along with public comments from the March 7 meeting, were presented to the VAC on May 20, 2020, and then the Board, for their consideration, on May 28, 2020.
The Board voted to postpone consideration until their meeting on June 25, 2020, at which time they voted 7-5 to approve the PDR and proceed to final design.
In July of 2020, Casco Bay Lines learned it would receive nearly $4 million to fund the 900 kWh diesel electric hybrid propulsion system for the new vessel. Casco Bay Lines applied for $3.2 million in funding to procure the technology through the FTA’s Passenger Ferry Grant program (49 U.S.C. 5307(h)) which provides competitive funding for projects that support passenger ferry systems in urbanized areas. The project was one of only 12 across the nation awarded funds from the program’s total distribution of $47.5 million dollars.
Casco Bay Lines will also receive $750,000 through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) Maritime Environmental and Technical Assistance (META) Program to go towards various components of the project. Casco Bay Lines will work with the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration (MARAD) to assess efficiency data and do additional testing and reporting on the hybrid engine and battery charging systems for use by others in the maritime industry.
At this time, the preliminary portion of the vessel design process is considered complete and final design work will begin. This phase of a project involves detailed design work for the various elements of a project and would include further determinations about the propulsion system selection based, largely, on availability of outside funding sources. There will be another opportunity for public input at the completion of final design followed by a Board vote. Should the Board approve final design, the design phase will be complete and construction will begin.
Casco Bay Lines strongly encourages public participation at all stages. In addition to the twelve previous public meetings held related to the Fleet Evaluation Project, there will be future opportunities for public input prior to the Board’s consideration of a proposed final vessel design.
Date, time and location of future public meetings will be posted on our website as well as shared via email to subscribers of our email newsletter list.
Public feedback may be submitted to moc.s1603441512enily1603441512abocs1603441512ac@tc1603441512ejorP1603441512noita1603441512ulavE1603441512teelF1603441512 or Casco Bay Lines Attn: Fleet Evaluation Project, P.O. Box 4656, Portland, ME, 04112-4656, and all comments sent to this inbox/mailing address will be shared with the Board of Directors prior to their consideration of the proposed vessel design.
Questions? Send via email to moc.s1603441512enily1603441512abocs1603441512ac@tc1603441512ejorP1603441512noita1603441512ulavE1603441512teelF1603441512 or mail to Casco Bay Lines Attn: Fleet Evaluation Project, P.O. Box 4656, Portland, ME, 04112-4656. Please Note: while Casco Bay Lines makes every effort to respond to all questions, we ask for your patience as we may be receiving large volumes.
* This audio recording was taken on March 23, 2019, at the public meeting of the Casco Bay Island Transit District held on Peaks Island at the Peaks Island Elementary School. The recording covers the entirety of the meeting beginning approximately at 10:00 am and concluding at approximately 12:30 pm.
**This audio recording was taken on March 7, 2020, at the public meeting of the Casco Bay Island Transit District held on Peaks Island at the Peaks Island Elementary School. The recording covers the entirety of the meeting beginning approximately at 10:15 am and concluding at approximately 11:45 pm.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
1) Why is Casco Bay Island Transit District (CBITD) in the process of designing a new vessel for Peaks Island service?
The CBITD Transit Asset Management Plan (TAM) identified that the Machigonne II (the car ferry that currently services Peaks Island) is beyond its useful life and the Maquoit is approaching the same status. This means that the Machigonne II has been in operation for 30+ years and, while safe to operate, it is becoming prohibitively expensive to maintain and operate. During 2015-2016 strategic planning sessions, the CBITD Board of Directors (Board) agreed on several priorities, including the need to perform a schedule and fleet analysis, the need to develop a vessel replacement schedule, and the need to secure funding for vessel replacement. Following the Schedule/Fleet Analysis (see FAQ #7), the Board voted on May 17, 2018, to proceed with design for a new vessel to service Peaks Island.
2) How far along is CBITD in the process of building a new vessel?
Naval architects, Elliot Bay Design Group (EBDG), were hired through a competitive process to manage the design process and, ultimately, propose a new vessel design for the Board’s consideration. As of June 2020, EBDG is approximately 30% through the design process and will now proceed to final design.
3) How is the new vessel being paid for?
With the help of the Federal Transit Administration (FTA), the State of Maine, the City of Portland and PACTS, CBITD has secured the approximately $15.2M in funds needed to design and construct one new Peaks Island ferry with an innovative diesel-electric hybrid propulsion system. With the support of Senators Collins and King, $9.2M of this funding came from the FTA’s Passenger Ferry Grant Program. CBITD competed with passenger ferries nationwide in 2017 and 2020 to win this competitive grant funding. The remaining $6M in funding comes from a combination of FTA urban formula funds, U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Environmental and Technical Assistance (META) Program funds, and funding from the Maine Department of Transportation and the City of Portland.
4) How much has already been spent on the new vessel?
CBITD has, as of February 2020, awarded one contract in the amount of $774,269.97 as part of the new vessel design to the naval architect firm EBDG for services related to the design of the new vessel. Following the Board’s approval of preliminary design on June 25, 2020, EBDG has been authorized to complete the final design and develop final plans and specifications to be used to advertise for a shipyard to construct the vessel.
5) Who is responsible for oversight of CBITD?
The FTA, Maine Public Utilities Commission, Maine Department of Transportation, United States Coast Guard (USCG), and the Department of Homeland Security all oversee CBITD in some capacity.
6) Are there any regulatory requirements for the new vessel process?
The new vessel process follows FTA grant requirements and the new vessel must conform to existing USCG regulations.
7) What information/sources of input is CBITD using as part of this process?
A marine transportation consulting firm, KPFF, was hired through a competitive process to evaluate the current schedule and fleet and make a recommendation to the Board as to which vessel to replace first. This evaluation is referred to as the Schedule/Fleet Analysis. CBITD also hired a naval architect, EBDG, to provide a proposed vessel design for the Board’s consideration. The Board is also receiving input from the Vessel Advisory Committee, members of the public and CBITD staff.
8) What is the Vessel Advisory Committee?
The Vessel Advisory Committee (VAC) is a concept that came out of Board strategic planning to ensure that a smaller group would have the opportunity to serve in an advisory role to the Board on the project. Such committees are a common tool used by public entities to increase quality of public participation in such a process. The composition of the committee was also set during Board strategic planning to include members of the public, CBITD staff and Directors from the Board. All VAC meetings are posted and open to the public. The VAC has no authority to create or approve policy or make any final decisions.
9) Who is on the Vessel Advisory Committee?
|Dan Doane||Board – Peaks (Peaks)|
|Dave Crowley||Board – Down Bay (Cliff)|
|Scott Johnston||Board – Down Bay (Little Diamond)|
|Bill Overlock||Board – Down Bay (Long)|
|Valerie Kelly||Public Member- Peaks Resident|
|Bob Hannigan||Public Member – Peaks Business|
|John Condon||Public Member – DB Res (Long)|
|Paul Belesca||Public Member – DB Bus (Chebeague)|
|Hank Berg||General Manager|
|Nick Mavodones||Operations Manager|
|Caity Gildart||Sales/Mktg. Manager|
|Nick Bishop||Maintenance Manager|
|Gene Willard||Senior Captain|
|John Tracy||Senior Captain|
|Gary Cressey||Operations Agent|
|Gretchen Frank||Deck Hand|
|Paul Pottle||Director of Projects|
10) Are members of the public welcome to join the Vessel Advisory Committee?
There are currently no “Public Member” openings on the VAC. Should there be an opening, a new member would be appointed by the President of the Board. Members of the public are welcome to attend all VAC meetings.
11) How can the public be assured that public feedback is being considered by decision makers?
All feedback received on the new vessel (via email or mail, at public meetings, as part of the survey, over the phone or submitted on paper feedback forms) is being provided to the Board for their consideration. CBITD has held a total of twelve meetings open to the public and conducted a survey related to the new vessel to ensure meaningful public participation in this process. It is the responsibility of the Board to consider this feedback, along with other inputs, as they make any decision related to the new vessel.
12) Were options other than building one new vessel considered?
No. The PUC allows CBITD to maintain a fleet of no more than five vessels. The Machigonne II is beyond its useful life and needs to be replaced. CBITD is fortunate to have secured funding for one new vessel at this time and the Board voted to first build one new ferry capable of servicing Peaks Island with passenger, vehicle and freight service.
13) When was the decision made to build a vessel with higher passenger capacity?
The Board voted on May 23, 2019, providing CBITD staff with capacity guidance to provide maximum passenger and vessel capacity parameters to the naval architects as they progress through the preliminary design phase. The Board voted on June 25, 2020, to approve preliminary design recommendations for a vessel capable of carrying up to 599 passengers and 15 cars.
14) Will a higher capacity vessel be larger in size?
While the Board has yet to approve final design, the preliminary design approved by the Board on June 25, 2020, included size of the vessel – 164-foot-long by 40-foot-wide by 12-foot-deep. Size of the vessel is determined by both passenger and vessel capacity as well as layout. The size of the vessel is constrained by existing space for berthing at CBITD’s Portland terminal.
15) Has CBITD considered a reservation system?
The Board has tasked CBITD staff with investigating the possible implementation of a vehicle reservation system. This investigation will take into consideration the complexities of our current ticketing structure. Ultimately, only the Board has the authority to move forward with a passenger reservation system. The Board has previously considered priority boarding and determined not to pursue due to legal risks and logistical challenges.
16) Will the proposed new vessel decrease trip frequency or otherwise impact the schedule?
The number of daily trips to Peaks Island will not change as a result of this project. A parallel Schedule Analysis Project was recently completed and no changes to the Peaks Island schedule were approved by the Board.
17) If the proposed new vessel carries more cars and passengers, can you explain how the crew will be able to have all disembark and embark within the same schedule?
The proposed new vessel would be slightly wider and have more space for freight and other carry-on items, which should result in a decreased time for loading of vehicles and freight and provide additional time for loading passengers. Further, the use of a double-ended ferry will reduce the time associated with berthing the vessel while the crossing time is expected to be similar to what the Machigonne II does now. Finally, CBITD has a plan to implement side loading on the mainland and has started discussions with the City of Portland about the possibility of developing side loading facilities for Peaks Island. As stated above, there will be no changes to the schedule.
18) Will the proposed new vessel cost more to operate and maintain than the Machigonne II because it is a higher capacity/larger vessel?
No, not necessarily. Expense for a vessel can be estimated by looking at the six categories of vessel operations expense including fuel expense, employee wage expense, general maintenance, drydock, diving, oil change and insurance expense. As part of the Board’s consideration of capacity guidelines for a new vessel, CBITD staff prepared a formal, and variable, financial analysis projection for three various vessel sizes to present to the board and the public. Based on our findings, the vessel design approved as part of the preliminary design report will have very similar total costs to the Machigonne II when it was built. For example, while maintenance costs may rise slightly to cover additional square footage, fuel costs actually decrease with lengthening of the vessel.
19) Is a higher capacity/larger vessel justifiable for CBITD’s off-season ridership?
As stated above, the operating costs during the off-season will be very similar to that of the Machigonne II. During peak season, when there are more than 399 people on board, additional crew will be needed to comply with Coast Guard manning requirements. However, the larger vessel should help eliminate the costs CBITD currently accrues to run additional trips during peak days in the summer. Overall, during the summer, we will likely experience a reduction in operating costs compared to current.
20) Has CBITD considered the financial implications of various new vessel designs?
Yes. Cost estimates associated with the proposed vessel design are included in the PDR.
21) Will the proposed new vessel and/or plans for the electric hybrid propulsion system result in fare increases?
There are currently no plans for a fare increase. Remarkably, CBITD Peaks Island fares have not increased in over 12 years, in part due to increased ridership. CBITD’s efforts to replace the Machigonne II with a more modern vessel are designed to stave off the potential need for fare increases in the near future due to the increased cost to maintain the 33-year-old Machigonne.
22) If funding for the proposed new vessel is not available, what is the cost estimate to construct a smaller, 400 passenger vessel?
With the exception of funding for the diesel electric hybrid system, which CBITD is actively seeking, funding for the proposed new vessel is available (see FAQ #3). The upfront capital cost for a smaller ferry (12 car/399 passenger vs. 15 car/599 passenger) would only be about 10% less. This is because the operating systems would remain the same, the number and size of props, controls, rudders, stairs, cabins, restrooms, wheelhouse and other features would remain the same, and the curved steel areas – the most expensive part of the construction- would remain the same. The only true reduction would be in the flat steel areas associated with the hull, deck and superstructure and this is the least expensive part of construction.
23) Can Senator Collins be helpful on this project? What is the impact if she isn’t reelected?
Senator Collins has been very supportive of our operation. With her support, and the support of many others (see FAQ #3), CBITD was able to secure funding to design and construct this new vessel. CBITD is grateful for this support but is not taking a position on any political elections.
24) Will the proposed new vessel have four props?
The proposed new vessel design recommended in the PDR is a double-ended ferry with a single propeller on each end of the ferry, a total of two props.
25) Will the inside seating on the proposed new vessel be the same as it is on the Machigonne II?
The current inside seating for the Machigonne II is 194 and the projected inside seating for the new vessel is approximately 217. The final layout of seating will be determined during the final design phase of the project.
26) Can you share an illustration of proposed bike and cart storage?
Under the current proposed vessel design, there are areas at either end of the cabin access on the main deck for storage of bikes, carts and other freight. An image of this is shared below. These areas will be refined during the final design stage of the project.
27) What is the life expectancy of the batteries that would be used for the proposed electric hybrid propulsion system?
The batteries for the energy storage system will be designed to have a 10 year life and the cost of their replacement has been factored in to cost estimates for the different systems over the expected life of the vessel.
28) The propulsion study shows that using a more efficient 1800 kWh propulsion system would decrease operational savings. Why?
The operational savings has been calculated with the cost of battery replacement as a factor. While many savings associated with the 1800 kWh and 900 kWh systems are similar, the cost of batteries for the 1800 kWh system in a ten-year period is almost $1M more than the cost for the 900 kWh system.
29) Will CBITD utilize a shipbuilder with experience in diesel electric hybrid propulsion systems?
While the diesel electric hybrid propulsion system being considered is fairly new to the US passenger ferry market, it is not new to the US shipbuilding market. Various commercial vehicles have been using this technology and have been supported by US shipbuilders. CBITD has been working closely with the major suppliers of these systems and they would be supplying the technology and technical support to any US shipbuilder interested in building our vessel.
30) Has CBITD considered incorporating Scandinavian firms with experience in diesel electric hybrid propulsion systems?
CBITD’s design team has met with firms that are doing the work for the Scandinavian operations and visited several of the sites to gather information about the system. The Scandinavian firms have been very helpful but do not have experience dealing with US Coast Guard regulations so our team is taking this information and applying it within our regulatory framework.
31) Is there local expertise to handle any maintenance issues with the new technology?
The various suppliers of the hybrid systems have support teams available throughout the country, including one supplier with a team as close as New Hampshire. As these systems become more common, additional support will develop. CBITD would also plan to source training specific to these systems for our electrician.
32) What is the fair market value of the Machigonne II? Can it be used to help pay for the electric hybrid propulsion system?
An analysis of the fair market value of the Machigonne II would be done only following a decision by the Board to dispose of that vessel. CBITD would then have to consult with FTA regarding the use of any funds derived from the sale of the vessel.
33) Could solar be added to the rooftop of the garage and incorporated into the mix to meet CBITD’s power requirements?
The adjacent garage is not owned or controlled by CBITD and currently has parking on the upper deck (roof). The CBITD terminal would have approximately 1/10 acre of roof that might be available to support solar panels but would represent only a fraction of the area needed to generate the power necessary to re-charge the vessel.
34) Will the proposed new vessel have any features that enhance safety or customer experience?
The new vessel, as is the case with all vessels in our fleet, will meet all current applicable United States Coast Guard safety regulations. Should a double-ended vessel design be selected and approved by the Board, it would likely provide more time for loading and unloading of passengers and vehicles. The new vessel will likely be very similar to the Machigonne II in its features.
35) What is CBITD doing to prepare for any potential future dip in ridership due to economy, weather, etc.?
In 2017, the Board approved a New Fund Balance policy, allowing CBITD to set aside revenue during profitable years in preparation for potential dips in revenue. CBITD works diligently to maintain the fiscal health of the Transit District through conservative financial practices. For example, the financial analysis currently underway for the new vessel project factors in future recessions based on past data. As a result of these efforts, CBITD’s Peaks Island fares have not increased in over 12 years – this includes the period known as the Great Recession. Financial data is audited by an independent organization and made available on the CBITD website. Finally, although CBITD has not had to exercise this option for the past five fiscal years, there is a line of credit option available to cover a lean period.
36) Does existing infrastructure support the proposed new vessel?
Yes. Naval architects are working within the existing infrastructure constraints. This includes considerations related to the depth of the existing channel to ensure the new vessel will not “bottom out” as some have suggested.
37) Is CBITD working to increase safety during loading/unloading and/or incorporating the Welch Street planning process as part of this new vessel project?
CBITD is currently in the process of renovating its terminal in Portland. In light of the increased demand for service, many of these renovations are aimed at enhancing the safety of passenger, freight and vehicle flow through measures that account for increased traffic on site such as improving pedestrian and vehicle queuing. Additionally, CBITD is working closely with the City of Portland as they move forward with a planning process for proposed improvements to their property on Peaks Island designed to increase safety. CBITD believes the vessel design can move forward separately from this process but will continue to support that effort moving forward.
38) Is CBITD making any improvements to infrastructure to support expected growth?
To account for significant growth since moving to the Maine State Pier in 1988, CBITD’s infrastructure at the Portland terminal is currently undergoing renovations. Many of these renovations are aimed at enhancing safety and maximizing space in the constrained existing terminal footprint.
39) Do Peaks Island residents play a role in the new vessel process?
Peaks Island residents are encouraged to play a role in the process by providing input to their local elected representatives on the Board who are ultimately tasked with making any decisions about the new vessel. Members of the public from Peaks Island are also included in the composition of the VAC and were surveyed at the outset of the project. CBITD has provided twelve different opportunities to provide input at public meetings, exceeding all requirements for public input in this project. Finally, Peaks Island residents, and all members of the public, are encouraged to provide input at any point in the process. CBITD encourages public input from any interested party at all stages of the process and all input is considered by the Board regardless of a person’s residential status.
40) Is quality of residential life on Peaks Island being considered as part of this decision?
CBITD’s mission is to provide sufficient dependable, reliable service in a safe and secure manner, as affordably as possible, so as to preserve the six year-round island communities it is tasked, by law, to serve. As a result, CBITD has a strong connection to Peaks Island and its residents. However, the Board is tasked specifically with considering what is best for the entity that is the Transit District in making any decisions and, as such, local issues related to the islands themselves are more appropriately addressed outside the official business conducted by CBITD.
41) Would CBITD participate in a process to discuss the future of tourism on Peaks Island?
As a stakeholder in Casco Bay’s island communities, CBITD would consider participating in any conversation related to the future of tourism on Peaks Island, especially if those entities with the authority to discuss and enact policy changes were involved in any such conversations. CBITD is currently working with the City of Portland in such a manner (see FAQ #37).
42) Does CBITD share minutes from public meetings?
Minutes are required at every Board meeting. Minutes for each Board meeting are approved at the subsequent meeting and are posted on the CBITD website once they have been approved by the Board and signed by the Clerk.
43) What are the next steps in the new vessel process?
EBDG has completed their analysis and compiled their comprehensive recommendations, including size, capacity, hull shape and propulsion with the evaluation of various hull configurations and propulsion systems in the form of a Preliminary Design Report (PDR). CBITD presented the PDR to the public at a public meeting on Peaks Island on March 7, 2020, at 10:15 am at the Peaks Island Elementary School.
EBDG’s recommendations, along with public comments gathered at the recent meeting, were presented to the Vessel Advisory Committee on May 20, 2020, and then the Board on May 28, 2020, for their consideration.
The Board voted to postpone consideration until their meeting on June 25, 2020, at which time they voted 7-5 to approve the PDR and proceed to final design.
At this time, the preliminary portion of the vessel design process is considered complete and final design work will now begin. This phase of a project involves detailed design work for the various elements of a project. There will be another opportunity for public input at the completion of final design followed by a Board vote. Should the Board approve final design, the design phase will be complete and construction will begin.
44) What is the timeframe for commenting on the design of the proposed new vessel?
Detailed design features, such as seating, windows, restrooms, and others will be finalized during the final design phase of the project. CBITD encourages the public to share comments on these aspects of the design as soon as possible to allow CBITD to consider feedback during this phase of the project. Comments can be sent to .moc.1603441512senil1603441512yaboc1603441512sac@t1603441512cejor1603441512Pnoit1603441512aulav1603441512Eteel1603441512F1603441512
45) How soon would the new vessel be in operation?
Following the Board’s approval of a final proposed design, the design phase will be complete and construction of the new vessel will begin. It is CBITD’s hope to have the new vessel in operation by the end of 2022.
46) What will the new vessel be named?
The name of the new vessel will be selected by the Board during the end of the construction phase. In the past, CBITD has included public input in this process.
47) What is the best way to share my feedback?
CBITD encourages all members of the public to share their feedback during this process. Future opportunities will be made available to share feedback at public meetings. Those meetings, when scheduled, will be posted on the CBITD website. Additionally, public feedback may be submitted to moc.s1603441512enily1603441512abocs1603441512ac@tc1603441512ejorP1603441512noita1603441512ulavE1603441512teelF1603441512 or Casco Bay Lines Attn: Fleet Evaluation Project, P.O. Box 4656, Portland, ME, 04112-4656, and all comments sent to this inbox/mailing address will be shared with the Board.
48) How can I get more information?
General questions about the new vessel can be directed to moc.s1603441512enily1603441512abocs1603441512ac@tc1603441512ejorP1603441512noita1603441512ulavE1603441512teelF1603441512 or Casco Bay Lines Attn: Fleet Evaluation Project, P.O. Box 4656, Portland, ME, 04112-4656. Please Note: while CBITD makes every effort to respond to all questions, we ask for your patience as we may be receiving large volumes.
Media or FOAA requests are best directed to Hank Berg, General Manager of Casco Bay Lines at moc.s1603441512enily1603441512abocs1603441512ac@bk1603441512nah1603441512. More information will be posted on the CBITD website as well as in the CBITD email newsletter.