In June of 2012 WaterBridge Steel was awarded a contract by the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure to design and build an 80 car commercial ferry to run on the Shelter Bay to Galena Bay route on Arrow Lake in the Central Kootenays. The ferry will replace two existing smaller vessels that are reaching the end of their life-cycle.
The new vessel is 320 feet long, 64 feet wide and weigh approximately 2.5 million pounds (1100 Metric Tons).
The new ferry was designed and built over a period of approximately 24 months on the shores of Upper Arrow Lake in the picturesque Village of Nakusp, BC.
The ferry "M.V. COLUMBIA" was formally delivered to the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and went into service June 26, 2014.
Click here to see construction photos
Click here to see time lapse construction video
The M.V. Columbia in her first days in service
This new vessel will bring several significant advantages to the Upper Arrow lake crossing:
- Significantly increased capacity
- Wider Lanes and smoother ramp transitions will ensure rapid loading and unloading
- More reliable
- More environmentally friendly than the current vessels
- Deck de-icing system
- Quiet smooth sailing
All of this resulting in fewer waits and a more enjoyable crossing.