Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard
For a century, the United States Coast Guard YARD has built, repaired and renovated ships in Baltimore, Maryland for the U. S. Coast Guard. It is the Service's sole shipbuilding and major repair facility, and an essential part of the Coast Guard's core industrial base and fleet support operations. The YARD annually operates on a $60 million internal revenue.
Senator Mikulski prevented closure of Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard, and increased jobs by relocating a supply center to Curtis Bay and winning a state-of-the-art shiplift facility.
The Industrial Department is the heart of the YARD, managing a spectrum of activities covering shipbuilding, ship repair, overhaul, renovation and modernization. The shipyard's expertise includes shafting, DC propulsion systems, hull repairs, sheetmetal fabrication and Navy-certified ordnance repairs and overhauls. Other YARD capabilities include completion of all shipboard piping, custom machining and manufacturing with specialties in diesel engine and reduction gear overhauls, and in shaft alignment, electrical and electronics installation including radar, communications and navigational equipment. The YARD has complete blast and paint facilities. It has the capability of cutting ferrous and nonferrous metals up to 6 inches thick. All welders are ABS and AWS qualified
The Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard, is a 113-acre federal facility located adjacent to Curtis Creek approximately six miles southeast of downtown Baltimore. The current mission of the Curtis Bay Coast Guard Yard is to provide core industrial support for the Coast Guard, including the design, construction, and repair of ships and boats. The Yard at Hawkins Point was originally established in 1899 as a Coast Guard training academy and boat repair facility. Industrial development began at Hawkins Point around 1906. By 1910, the Yard had become a fully operational ship-building and repair facility. The Yard reached its peak of development during World War II, with a civilian workforce of more than 3,000. In 1941, a bulkhead was constructed farther out into Curtis Creek. Three piers and two floating dry docks were built and moored along the piers. The current waterfront configuration was essentially completed when construction was finished in the mid-1940s. Following World War II, the Yard workforce gradually declined. Site operations, including vessel repair and overhaul, buoy construction, and various manufacturing operations, continued into the 1960s and 1970s. Manufacturing operations were reduced at Hawkins Point throughout the 1980s and 1990s. Major activities in the 1990s centered around the construction of a 3,500-ton shiplift.
The Hawkins Point Terminal Facilities consisted of 256.49 acres acquired by the U.S. Government for the storage and transport of ammunition, ordnance, and chemical warfare material, as well as general supplies, to the Allied Forces in Europe during world War II. On 30 November 1956 the U.S. Government reported the entire site excess to the General Services Administration (GSA). At the time of excess, improvements on the site included a wooden pier, several brick buildings, railroad tracks and five railroad sidings, a U.S. Public Health Quarantine Station, and a lighthouse (range light). The fee property (127 acres) was acquired by the Maryland Port Administration (MPA) from GSA by deed dated 3 July 1950. The total acreage acquired by MPA was 137.06 acres. The increased acreage is based on the additional land created by the filling in of Thorns Cove for rail line stability purposes during the period that DOD occupied the site. Current site owners and users include the MPA, Eastalco Aluminum Company, Maryland Environmental Services, the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company, United States Gypsum Company, and the U.S. Government (lighthouse and Quarantine Station). The Francis Scott Key Bridge and U.S. Interstate Highway 695 also occupy portions of the site.
In April, 1899, the Revenue Cutter Service (RCS) signed a lease with a prominent Baltimore physician and attorney for 36 acres of farmland surrounding Arundel Cove. Two months later, LT John C. Moore, USRCS, arrived aboard the side-wheeler COLFAX to begin establishment of his experimental shipyard. LT Moore's original plant set-up of four small buildings included a mill for sawing and shaping lumber. The following year saw the arrival of the CHASE, a training ship for the RCS. The crew set up permanent quarters at the Arundel Cove "Depot," marking the beginning of the Coast Guard Academy. In 1905, Congress authorized the purchase of the Depot's land, added additional acreage, and the "Revenue Cutter Station at Curtis Bay, was permanently established.
With the advent of World World II, the Depot underwent extensive expansion to meet war demands. Improvements included a 3000-ton floating drydock, 2 shipways and a 320' x 60' concrete pier with tower crane. The Depot, now comparable in size and functions to a medium-size Navy shipyard, was officially designated the U. S. Coast Guard YARD.
The YARD completed the 210' Major Maintenance Availability Program in October, 1998, with the recommissioning of the Cutter DECISIVE. Fourteen of the Coast Guard's 210' cutters underwent, respectively, an 18-month, $21 million renovation at the YARD since the program began in 1984. The YARD is the sole source for major repair of naval weapons systems used by the Coast Guard fleet. Topping the list is the repair of the MK 75 76mm guns and includes a contract with the Naval Sea Systems Command for the overhaul of the Saudi Arabian MK 75 weapons systems. The YARD expanded its market base in the mid 1990's to include the overhaul of the Paxman engine, the main propulsion engine in the 110' patrol boat. The work is considered a primary example of core work for the shipyard. The YARD has excelled in its capability to bring its expertise to the customer rather than the customer coming into the YARD for service.
With the dedication of the new $18 million shiplift in November, 1997, the YARD increased its capability to accommodate repairs of Coast Guard vessels. The land-based shiphandling facility replaced the YARD's nearly 60-year old drydocks. It is environmentally friendly and offers lower maintenance cost. The YARD became the first organization in the United States government to achieve ISO 9001 certification in 1995 and ISO 9001 recertification in 1998. ISO 9001 is a set of internationally recognized standards for quality management systems.
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