"Auto Train" for Boats

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me_little_me

Conductor
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Jul 16, 2010
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There used to be a company RiverBarge.com that had a barge pushed by a towboat where you put your RV on board and toured along the Mississippi. Also on the barge was a small building that had the game room and other amenities. You lived on board in your RV. They expanded the idea to put hotel rooms on one barge attached to another that had dining room, bars, theatre, etc. and we took four cruises with them.
They expanded to the Ohio River and elsewhere but they tried to expand to the Missouri River but that year, it had too little water and they had to cancel a number of tours. Then Katrina came along and devastated their income (they were NOL based). They eventually folded. Miss them.
Kind of reminded me of what happened to the original Auto-Train company.
 

Dakota 400

Conductor
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Mar 5, 2014
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I just happened to come across this...

There are all different kinds of these transporters. I have seen them a couple of times, while transiting the Panama Canal on cruises. Some carry a bunch of small to mid sized yachts, others only carry one or two large yachts...
I have seen this as well. Often, at the beginning and end of the Caribbean season, on the Port Everglades web cam, one can sometimes see these vessels and the loading and unloading of the boats/yachts.

It must cost a "boat load" of money to have this done. :D
 

MARC Rider

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Apr 5, 2011
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Baltimore. MD
A marine version of the Auto Train is called "ferry". :)

Back when I was working on reducing diesel emissions and GHG from the freight industry, we'd hear propsals for "coastal fast ferries." Set up a ferry that would connect, say, Port Newark with ports down South, like Charleston, Savannah, florida, etc, and you could get lots of semi trailers off I 95. I guess they could take cars, too. Some of these new oceangoing catamaran ships can go pretty fast, too, so it might not be that much slower than the auto train.
 
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