New Feadship yard taking shape in the heart of Amsterdam
In the presence of invited guests, the first concrete was poured into the giant drydocks. Due for completion at the end of 2016, the Dutch builder’s fourth yard is under construction in a prime water-side location in Amsterdam. This facility is set to expand Feadship range with the yachts of up to 160 meters in length.
“The average length of the superyachts we are building continues to grow,” explains Feadship director and the CEO of Royal Van Lent shipyard, Jan-Bart Verkuyl. “The majority of projects currently underway are above 80 metres and there is a clear trend to go ever larger".
A cooperative venture between two shipyards, Royal Van Lent and Koninklijke De Vries Scheepsbouw, Feadship currently operates three facilities: in Aalsmeer, Kaag Island and Makkum that was opened in 2005. Amsterdam yard is supposed to solve the size limitations on the production imposed by the original Aalsmeer and Kaag yards.
When completed, it will be run by Royal Van Lent along with Kaag facility that should continue its operations at full capacity. The two premises will share the same management team, with some 450 skilled employees moving between the yards when required.
Apart from new superyachts, measuring up to 160 meters, the new yard will specialize in refits of the existing Feadships. This project will eventually see the banks of the IJ waterway adorned with a 35-metre-high hall and ten three-story workshops.
The fact that Feadship will be occupying a five-hectare site with an option for a further 3.8 hectares supports the expectations of “a bright future for this glamorous industry in Amsterdam”, indicates Port of Amsterdam CEO, Koen Overtoom, encouraging other Dutch shipbuilders to follow this example.
Feadship is among the largest employers within the global superyacht industry, with over 2000 specialists covering every discipline involved in the design, engineering, naval architecture and construction of luxury motor-yachts. This new initiative means further employment of around 150 specialized craftsmen, all of whom will benefit from the training programs in place, which are designed to pass down skills from generation to generation.
“This showcases our determination to preserve both traditional crafts and the very latest technological skill sets. Together with the other leading yachtbuilders in the Netherlands, Feadship forms a vital part of the Dutch superyacht cluster, which includes a wide range of leading supply companies and research institutes. The role that Feadship and the Dutch superyacht industry play in supporting innovation within the wider commercial shipping industry cannot be overestimated either. With this new facility we once again confirm our commitment to the future of the Dutch economy,” director Verkuyl concludes.