October 23 - VT Systems subsidiary VT Halter Marine has begun construction on the first of two LNG-powered con-ro ships for Crowley Maritime Corporation's liner services group, which the two companies originally contracted for in November 2013.

The Commitment Class vessels will be 219.5 m long, 32.3 m wide, with a draft of 10 m and an approximate deadweight capacity of 26,500 tonnes. Cargo capacity will be approximately 2,400 teu, with additional space for nearly 400 vehicles.

The Jones Act-compliant ships will replace Crowley's towed triple-deck barge fleet, which has served the Puerto Rico/Caribbean trade continuously since the early 1970s. The new ships, which will be named El Coqui and Taino, are scheduled for delivery in the second and fourth quarter of 2017.