KETCHIKAN, Alaska (AP) - A Seattle-based naval architecture and marine engineering firm with a long involvement with Alaska ferries has opened an office in Ketchikan.
The Elliott Bay Design Group plans to use its new office in the Ward Cove area as its operations base in Alaska.
"This move enables us to better serve our Alaska clients and to establish new relationships and deepen existing ones," Brian King, Elliott Bay's vice president of engineering, said in an announcement Thursday. "We hope to enjoy beneficial business partnerships in the state for some time to come."
Elliott Bay designed the Inter-Island Ferry Authority ferry Prince of Wales and currently is involved with the Alaska Marine Highway System's design process for the new Alaska Class Ferry Day Boat project.
Over the years, Elliott Bay has "worked on virtually every vessel of the (AMHS) fleet, in some form or another, through support projects," said Christina Villiott, Elliott Bay's director of marketing and sales.
Elliott Bay's predecessor firm, the Seattle-based Nickum and Spaulding Associates, designed the AMHS ferry Columbia, said Villiott.
In 1987, Nickum & Spaulding's assets were bought by three partners to form the Elliott Bay Design Group, according to company information.
Elliott Bay opened an office on the Gulf of Mexico coast in 2006.
According to the company, its new Ketchikan office at 7559 N. Tongass Hwy. follows months of strategic planning and aligns with the firm's goals of supporting clients that operate in Alaska, and to serve as a "regional resource for quick-reaction field engineering."
Villiott noted that, in addition to ferry work, Elliott Bay supports the commercial fishing vessel and tug and barge operators in Alaska.
It's also a 12-year member of Southeast Conference, and a member of the Ketchikan Marine Industry Council that's funding by the Ketchikan Gateway Borough and industry to strengthen, promote and raise awareness of the maritime sector.
Doug Ward, the Ketchikan Marine Industry Council's senior project director, said Elliott Bay's announcement is good news, and is representative of the continuing growth and evolution of the maritime vendor base here.
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