April 11 - Seaspan Shipyard in Vancouver has taken delivery of a brand new 300-tonne capacity gantry crane.

The gantry crane, which stands 80 m high and measures 76 m wide, is the largest of its type in Canada, says Brian Carter, president of Seaspan Shipyard. It forms part of Vancouver Shipyard's CAD200 million (USD183 million) modernisation project.

"The transformation of Vancouver Shipyards has been incredible as we continue to build a world-class shipbuilding and ship repair centre of excellence on the West Coast," Carter added.

The gantry crane was shipped from Russia to the North Vancouver gateway in three pieces, where a 115-m long boom crawler crane was positioned to construct the new crane. It will take several months to install the necessary cables, hydraulics and other systems to get the crane up and running.

Once operational, the gantry crane will be used to complete heavy lifting work when Seaspan Shipyard starts building vessels under the federal government's CAD8 billion (USD7.32 billion) National Shipbuilding Program in the third quarter of 2014.

Seaspan is an association of Canadian companies primarily involved in coastal marine transportation, shipdocking/ship escort, ship repair and shipbuilding services in Western North America.

In addition to the marine transportation services offered directly through Seaspan, commercial ferry, shipyard and bunkering services are provided via affiliate companies: Marine Petrobulk, Seaspan Ferries, Vancouver Drydock, Vancouver Shipyards and Victoria Shipyards.