Work picking up at Shelburne Ship repair

Published on February 21, 2011
Construction workers erect the onshore components of a new marine slipway at Shelburne Ship Repair.


Life can be seen bustling and working away at Shelburne Ship Repair as workers continue construction and work on a ship for the first time since closing its doors to see to much-needed repair.

There were 40 people working at the site last week on the MV Glen Oak, a CSL cargo ship undergoing work at the wharf.  This is in addition to ongoing work to refurbish the marine railway and cradle which, according to Mary Keith, vice president of communications for J.D. Irving, Limited, is on target for May completion.

Currently the focus of construction is for the assembly of the new slip.

Keith says that no issues seem to be marring the timelines created.

“The onshore portion is on track and schedule,” she says.  “We are still finalizing the schedule and plan for the offshore component.”

She says that once they have established a final schedule they would be able to schedule installation of the hauling chain and offshore components.

While the workers continue to build and work on the current repair contract, Irving is working on finding more ships in need of repair.

“There is no confirmed work to announce but we are chasing potential contracts,” she says.

After 13 years of leasing the site, Irving purchased the site from the province and received a $9-million loan, to make improvements to the site so that business could resume. 

The dilapidated state of the marine slip would not allow for the company to bring in any business.

The contract with the province states that 80 per cent of the loan is forgivable if certain conditions are met, including the creation of jobs and maintaining a steady business.

During the 15-year period of the loan, it is estimated that 60 full-time jobs would create $2.9-million in tax revenue from spin-off jobs together with $433,000 in revenue related to construction.