The first big commercial boats to be built in the Pittsburgh district in more than 30 years will be dedicated next week, the marine service company Campbell Transportation announced Friday.
The towboats Renee Lynn and Alice Jean, named after one company director's wife and another's mother, will be dedicated at a ceremony on Pittsburgh's North Shore on Tuesday.
They were built at the company's facility in Dunlevy in Washington County at a cost of about $3 million each, company chairman and CEO Peter Stephaich said. They have state-of-the-art electronics and efficient low-emissions engines.
Vessel manufacturing in Pittsburgh ended with the closure of the Dravo Corp. shipbuilding facility on Neville Island in 1983. According to the website shipbuildinghistory.com, the last item delivered was the towboat Bronwynne Brent, later renamed the City of Cleveland.
Tuesday's ceremony will also dedicate a drydock that was recently manufactured in West Virginia, Mr. Stephaich said.
He said he was pleased to revive shipbuilding in the district. "It's part of the history of Pittsburgh, going back to the days of Lewis and Clark," he said.
The new towboats are named for Renee Lynn Grizzel, wife of Steve Grizzel, director of human resources, and Alice Jean Corigliano, mother of Ron Corigliano, director of regulatory compliance.
"We are pleased and proud to name both these towboats after family members of two such dedicated and hardworking members of our Campbell Transportation family," Mr. Stephaich said. "We think it is a fitting tribute to their years of service that these workboats will service the Pittsburgh region and beyond for many years to come, pushing cargoes like coal to help fuel the utilities and businesses on which our economy depends, and creating jobs.
"We absolutely hope that there's more to come," he said.