New York Real Estate company RXR Realty, in partnership with the SS United States Conservancy, has announced that the iconic ocean liner SS United States will be repurposed as a permanently-moored hospitality and cultural space.
RXR is requesting expressions of interest from a number of major U.S. waterfront cities including Boston, New York, Philadelphia, Miami, Seattle, San Francisco, Los Angeles and San Diego.
With her maiden voyage in 1952, the 990-foot SS United States became the fastest ocean liner to ever cross the Atlantic, and at 100 feet longer than the RMS Titanic, the largest ever entirely made in America.
The SS United States had a secret secondary identity as the world’s fastest troop transport ship, designed as part of a Cold War Pentagon program. The ship hosted more than a million passengers during her service career including four U.S. Presidents, numerous celebrities, and legions of tourists, students, diplomats and immigrants.
As part of RXR’s plan, there will be 600,000 square feet available for development. The area will be a museum honoring the ship’s history. RXR has already assembled an architectural and engineering team including Perkins Eastman Architects, HLW and Gibbs & Cox. Gibbs & Cox is the naval architect who originally designed the vessel, while an HLW partner on the team sailed on the SS United States voyage as a six-year-old.
I’d rather see the SS United States repurposed as a working cruise ship. Better yet, she should be brought back as an actual working ocean liner.