In early October, the headline in the Philadephia Inquirer was Is the S.S. United States headed toward the scrap yard?. After years of attempting to save the iconic cruise ship, the SS United States Conservancy announced that the SS United States, the fastest ocean liner ever built, might be “lost by the end of October.” The group has spent years attempting to find a developer to convert the 1951-built liner to a hotel, casino, museum, or some other form of tourist attraction. The ship has been sitting at a berth in Philadelphia for the past 19 years and is costing $60,000 per month in berthing fees. Now, a new berthing offer has emerged which may offer a reprieve for the ship.
John Quadrozzi Jr., concrete magnate and owner of the Gowanus Bay Terminal in the Red Hook section of Brooklyn, has offered a rent-free berth at his facility to the SS United States to allow time to work on the development plans. There are still obstacles to the plan, not the least of which is raising the estimated $2 million dollars that it would cost to tow the ship from Philadelphia.
If the ship does move to Red Hook it will be very close to its original berth on the Hudson River. As noted by New York Magazine, “This may be the first recorded case of an elderly New Yorker moving back from Philadelphia because the rent is cheaper here.“
Thanks Old Salt Blog for the story.
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