USS Alabama Battleship is getting an upgrade, construction already underway

Published: Apr. 8, 2022 at 12:39 PM CDT
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MOBILE, Ala. (WALA) - The USS Alabama Battleship Commission held a press conference on Thursday morning to announce repairs happening onboard the battleship.

After 82 years, the teak deck on the USS Alabama Battleship is finally being replaced.

The beloved ship, which is recognized as a piece of Alabama history and near and dear to many Alabamians is getting the much-needed fix after daily wear and tear from visitors and workers, especially from hurricanes.

Teak wood does not rot and is especially strong.

The 18-member commission has been trying to get the teak deck replaced for decades, but the cost was always a hurdle. The project is estimated to cost $8.5 million.

Bill Tunnel, a USS Alabama Battleship Commission chairman said the ship will stay open throughout construction.

“The project has five phases, the plan was carefully drafted to allow our visitors maximum access to the deck, with an exception of the current working area, the safety of our visitors and park staff is paramount,” said Tunnell.

Youngblood-Barrett Construction & Engineering will be handling the repair. Chris Dunning, the project construction manager said he’s honored to be a part of the project.

“We are blessed to be a part of this project, it’s really amazing to participate in something that you know is going to benefit not only your kids but your grandkids, everyone is going to be able to come through here,” said Dunning.

The commission said the project would take around three years to be complete.