EVERETT — A new ship can call Naval Station Everett its home port, but for now it won’t actually be in Port Gardner.
The USS Cape St. George will undergo “long-term” repair and maintenance construction at Seattle shipyard Vigor Marine LLC, according to a news release from Rep. Rick Larsen’s office.
Sailors and their families assigned to the ship are expected to move to the Puget Sound, but the ship will not be in Everett, Naval Station Everett spokesperson Kristin Ching said.
“A lot of times they do that because there is no Navy installation in Seattle,” she said. “The closest one is in Everett.”
The ship is scheduled to change its home port on Sept. 15, according to Larsen’s news release.
It’s not clear how long construction could take because every project is different, Ching said. Where the ship will go after is also unknown, she added.
The USS Cape St. George is a Ticonderoga-class cruiser now stationed at Naval Base San Diego. It has a crew of nearly 350, and was commissioned in 1993.
It’s named after the World War II battle of Cape St. George. It took place in the South Pacific off the island of New Ireland in Papua New Guinea in November 1943.
Naval Station Everett is home to five destroyers and two Coast Guard ships. Leaders here have advocated to bring new ships to the base, especially after it was announced in 2018 that the aircraft carrier USS Nimitz would not return to the naval station.
Larsen represents the 2nd Congressional District, that includes parts of Snohomish, Skagit and Whatcom counties, along with all of Island and San Juan counties. He’s a senior member of the House Armed Services Committee.
Late last year he released a report outlining why Naval Station Everett should house more Navy and Coast Guard assets. Those reasons include the base’s location and its natural deep water port, providing enough room to support giant aircraft carriers. Naval Base San Diego is the only other Navy installation on the West Coast with that kind of space.
“Everett is ready, willing and able to support more missions,” Larsen said in a prepared statement. “I will continue working with local leaders to make that case to the Navy and the Coast Guard and ensure Everett remains ‘the Sailor’s Choice.’”