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The Falls of Clyde didn’t sell at auction. Now what?

(Image: Hawaii News Now)
(Image: Hawaii News Now)
Published: Feb. 28, 2019 at 4:35 PM HST
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HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - The saga of the four-masted Falls of Clyde at Honolulu Harbor is nearing a new chapter.

On Thursday, the state announced that an auction of the 140-year-old ship didn’t drum up any qualified bidders.

And so the 280-foot, iron-hulled oil tanker, the only one of its kind in the world, is set to remain at Honolulu Harbor for the foreseeable future ― until the state can figure out what’s next for the ship.

Officials, though, do want to have the Falls of Clyde out of the harbor by June 1, the start of the 2019 hurricane season.

The Department of Transportation said it has three potential options for the Falls of Clyde:

  • It could sell the vessel.
  • It could donate it to a government agency.
  • Or it could “otherwise dispose of the vessel" as provided by law.

The Falls of Clyde has been at Honolulu Harbor for years, rotting in place. In fact, the state ― citing safety concerns ― had wanted the vessel out of the harbor since 2014.

Lots of people agree the ship is worth saving, but the logistics of doing that have proven a formidable obstacle. A number of plans from the Friends of the Falls of Clyde aimed at saving the ship have fallen through.

[Read more: 140-year-old ship could be auctioned off after restoration plan falls through]

Deputy Director Derek Chow, of the state Harbors Division, said officials were hopeful they’d find a bidder for the ship.

“While a lot of people may want to see the ship restored,” he said, "paying for it remains an issue.”

This story will be updated.

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