The Northwest Seaport Alliance will hold a special public meeting Monday, Dec. 19, to take action on a proposed interim use of Terminal 5 in the North Harbor. Alliance staff is seeking approval to join Foss Maritime in an effort to secure a contract to berth the USNS Bob Hope vessel. The USNS Bob Hope is the first ship in the Navy’s first class of large, medium-speed, roll-on/roll-off ships (LMSR), and is part of the United States Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC). The primary mission of these ships is to transport shore-based equipment and supplies in support of military and humanitarian operations.
This past summer the Bob Hope participated in the Cascadia Rising earthquake recovery exercise. These ships are a key asset in recovery efforts in the event of a widespread natural disaster.
The ships are operated by 30 civilian mariners who work for a private company under contract to MSC and up to 50 embarked military personnel who monitor and maintain the equipment being transported. The ships are maintained in reduced operational status, which means they are operationally ready in four days.
Should Foss and the NWSA be successful in winning this bid, the ship would berth at Terminal 5. The Navy plans to run the ship on shore power while at berth.
This type of interim use for Terminal 5 is part of the alliance’s strategic business plan to diversify cargo and maximize terminal use. It will in no way interfere with the modernization of the terminal and the goal of creating a first-class container terminal.
Meeting materials can be found here.