People have been obsessed with the Titanic ever since when she went on her maiden voyage, hit an iceberg and tragically sunk, killing over 1,500 people. There are been movies about the ship, (shuttered) plans to raise her, museums, exhibitions and dinner theater shows about her, plans to bring tourists to her watery grave, as well as dozens of hours of video of the wreck.
Ideas to rebuild the Titanic have come and gone for decades. Right now there are two different companies building two different full-sized replicas of the ship of dreams; one that will probably finish pretty soon, one that I suspect never will really even start.
The Titanic II that’s sinking into oblivion
“Blue Star Line will create an authentic Titanic experience, providing passengers with a ship that has the same interiors and cabin layout as the original vessel, while integrating modern safety procedures [ETA: read: enough lifeboats and a hull that’s welded rather than riveted], navigation methods and 21st century technology to produce the highest level of luxurious comfort,’’ Mr. Palmer said in a statement.
“The ship will follow the original journey, carrying passengers from Southampton to New York, but she will also circumnavigate the globe, inspiring and enchanting people while attracting unrivaled attention, intrigue and mystery in every port she visits.”
It seems that Mr. Palmer (who has been described as an “eccentric billionaire” ),who has had several false starts to this $500,000,000 ship (it was supposed to set sail in 2016, then 2018, and now 2022), has, in recent months, gotten all these people on board (you see what I did there?) – ship management, compliance management, an organization to review drawings, calculation and studies for the ship to ensure compliance with modern standards, etc.
But there’s still absolutely nothing to suggest the ship has even started to be built yet. Nor, if you ask me, anything that suggests it ever will. Can a ship be declared unsinkable if it’s never been built?
The Titanic II that will never sink (because it’s 1,000 miles inland)
Meanwhile, over in China, Seven Star Energy Investment and Wuchang Shipbuilding have teamed up and are in the midst of actively building an entertainment complex that will include their own version of Titanic II. Work began in 2016 and when completed, the ship is expected to be 882 feet long and 175 feet high. They’re using Titanic’s original blueprints to ensure their Titanic is as close to the original as possible.
The one big difference is that THIS Titanic II will always be landlocked – it’s being built on a resort in Suchuan Province, which is about 1,000 miles inland. The ship will “float” in a reservoir within the River Qi and will act as a museum, complete with an exact reproduction of the Grand Staircase, working boiler room and a replica of the massive steam engine.
Here are some recent pictures of the construction:
Romandisea Titanic Construction Update (20190412) (Part 2) :
P1: Meeting for a solution to coating sagging;
P2: Shell plating coating to be inspected;
P3: F deck welding for pre-assembly. pic.twitter.com/sXomXS5nfX
— Romandisea Titanic (@RomandiseaT2) April 12, 2019
Romandisea Titanic Construction Update (20190329) :
Latest crane view and side view. pic.twitter.com/3b9cqeESyX
— Romandisea Titanic (@RomandiseaT2) March 29, 2019
Romandisea Titanic Construction Update (20190322) part two:
P1: Scaffold sett-up at engine cabin;
P2: Working at stern. pic.twitter.com/FgYJqdOKCm
— Romandisea Titanic (@RomandiseaT2) March 22, 2019
THIS Titanic II, instead of transporting passengers, will house overnight guests in hotel rooms (think First Class cabins), so they can get a feel of what it was like to be aboard the ship, without the worry of sinking.
This video is in English and gives an idea of what to expect the entire project, including the Titanic II, to be. Granted, it’s a very stylized idea (or maybe it’s just how the Chinese advertise things, I dunno), but it’s an idea 😉 (sorry about all the commercials at the beginning)
Check out Romandisea Titanic’s Twitter feed for more updates as the Titanic II, which is guaranteed to not sink, continues to be built!
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This post first appeared on Your Mileage May Vary