NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Bollinger Shipyards is closing its operations in New Orleans and plans to shift the work to its larger facilities on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, officials said.
The Bollinger company confirmed the move Tuesday, saying the decision to close its Algiers Point facility was driven by a desire to consolidate its repair and maintenance operations, and was not a reflection of a downturn in business or any negative aspect of New Orleans, The Times-Picayune/The New Orleans Advocate reported. The company is headquartered in Lockport.
“We recently reallocated the work being performed at Algiers to our other facilities along the Gulf Coast,” spokesperson T.J. Tatum said. “Importantly, all jobs were relocated within our other 13 facilities as we continue to expand our workforce.”
The company is the largest privately owned shipbuilder in the United States. Last year, it acquired Halter Marine in Mississippi, which considerably expanded its shipbuilding order book for Coast Guard and Navy vessels and added a large repair yard.
Bollinger said the larger of the two dry docks at Algiers — “Mrs. Jody,” which weighs in at 4,000 tons — sailed off to the newly acquired shipyard in Mississippi. The smaller dock — “Miss Darby,” about half the size of its counterpart — went to Port Fourchon to be reconditioned, and could later be moved to the company’s shipyard in Harvey.
The Algiers site is owned by the Port of New Orleans. The port, which signed a 10-year lease with Bollinger in 2021, is negotiating release terms with the company.
“We are working with them on the terms of their lease to achieve a mutually beneficial transition,” port spokesperson Kimberly Curth said. “We have several interested parties in the riverfront property to ensure continuity of maritime commerce at the facility.”
Many of the Bollinger Algiers workers were being offered jobs at Harvey repair yard, the newspaper reported.