New Arrow Park ferry begins full service

The last of four ferries built by Waterbridge Steel was launched earlier this month

The new Arrow Park III went into service on Monday. Photo submitted

The new Arrow Park III went into service on Monday. Photo submitted

After a week of installation and testing, the new ferry at Arrow Park was expected to be in service Wednesday.

The president of Waterbridge Steel says the new ferry they built to replace the aging cable ferry on the Arrow Lake was expected to be fully operational this week.

“It was a month ago we put it in the water, and towed it down to Arrow Park, and put it on temporary cables for sea trials and crew training,” says Waterbridge president John Harding.

The Arrow Park III is the last of four modern ferries built by Waterbridge Steel over the last few years. Others have been installed at Harrop, Glade, and Adams Lake.

The entire four-year contract was worth about $28 million for the Nakusp-based construction company, and employed about 20 people at the time the last ferry was launched.

“The new ferries have worked well for the communities they’re in, the ministry has done a good job of replacing these old, old ferries,” Harding says. “We were happy to be part of it and certainly happy to be part of the communities we worked in.”

The Arrow Park ferry will be operated by a subsidiary of the company, Waterbridge Ferries.

The vessel runs across the junction of Upper and Lower Arrow Lakes at Arrow Park, 22 kilometres south of Nakusp on Highway 6.

The new 24-car ferry will be larger and able to carry more vehicles than the existing ferry, with capacity increased to handle commercial vehicles at full highway loads.

Other projects, electrification

With construction complete, Harding says the company is shifting over to other contracts in the area.

“We have a bunch of odds-and-sods projects at this point, though I think everyone would like to take a bit of a break,” he says. “But there’s no place to go, so we’ll jump right into the extra things we have to do.”

That includes retrofitting and repair work on a number of the company’s vessels.

“We have a year or two of work for a smaller crew, and we’ll keep on going,” he says.

He says they’re also hoping to take part in the next big phase of the province’s upgrading of its inland ferry system — converting the service to renewable energy sources.

The Arrow Park III is also the first vessel of the ministry’s inland fleet that will be fully electrified, an important part of the Province’s CleanBC commitment. The vessel is scheduled to be fully electrified in 2021.

“They’d like to get moving on those very quickly, and I think we’ll be involved with that,” says Harding.

Waterbridge now employs about six people, but that could change as new contracts are issued.

Harding also says the COVID-19 pandemic has not directly affected his company’s day-to-day business of operating several ferries in the region. They have, however, hired extra staff to deep-clean the boats and keep them safe and sanitized for workers and passengers alike.

SEE: People now allowed to stay in cars on BC Ferries to avoid COVID-19 spread



reporter@rosslandnews.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Protestors blocking Columbia Avenue Saturday evening. Photo: Betsy Kline
Old growth protesters begin 24-hour blockade of Castlegar’s main street

Members of Extinction Rebellion plan to stay overnight

Forty sled dogs were seized by the BC SPCA from a Salmo kennel in February. A recent ruling has decided the dogs won’t be returned. Photo: Gounsil/Flickr
BC Farm Industry Review Board rules against Salmo kennel after 40 sled dogs seized

Spirit of the North Kennels was also ordered to pay BC SPCA $64,000

Residents line up outside the Vernon Recreation Complex for their COVID-19 vaccine Saturday, June 5. (Jennifer Smith - Morning Star)
No appointments necessary for first dose COVID-19 vaccine: Interior Health

People can just show up at clinics, register on the spot and get the shot

Aidan McLaren-Caux is the Nakusp and Area Development Board’s new economic development coordinator. (Contributed)
Nakusp councillor hired as economic development coordinator for Nakusp and Area Development Board

Aidan McLaren-Caux will be coordinating economic strategy and action

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry on Thursday, June 10, mentioned Grand Forks among two other COVID “hot spots” in B.C. Photo: Screenshot - YouTube COVID-19 BC Update, June 10, 2021
PHO Henry says West Kootenay city is a COVID ‘hot spot’ in B.C.

There are 11 cases of COVID-19 in the Grand Forks local health area, according the BC CDC

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Premier John Horgan speaks as provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry, right, and health minister Adrian Dix look on during a press conference to update on the province’s fall pandemic preparedness plan during a press conference from the press theatre at Legislature in Victoria, Wednesday, Sept. 9, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
B.C. officials to provide details on Step 2 of COVID reopening plan Monday

Step 2 could allow for larger gatherings and a resumption of recreational travel

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read