FORT FISHER — The North Carolina Department of Transportation will be shutting down the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry starting early 2020.
“A project to replace the aging cable-counterweight ramp system at the Southport and Fort Fisher ferry terminals will temporarily shut down the Southport-Fort Fisher ferry route beginning Jan. 6. The $3 million project will replace the old system with an updated hydraulic ramp system, which runs smoother and is less prone to accidental failures such as the one that shut down the route for five weeks in August,” according to the NCDOT.
While it is an inconvenience for commuters, it is a necessary upgrade to the service according to NCDOT.
“This is a critically needed upgrade that will bring the Southport and Fort Fisher terminals up to date technologically,” said NCDOT Ferry Division Director Harold Thomas. “We know the shutdown will be an inconvenience for commuters on that route, but it will result in more reliable ferry service in the long run.”
The NCDOT hopes to have the project completed and the route opened by April 6 and those with ‘commuter passes’ will be credited with an extension once the route is open again.