LA PORTE, Texas — Tuesday will be the last full day the Battleship Texas will be docked at its longtime La Porte home at the San Jacinto Battleground.
The last remaining battleship that served in both World Wars will be headed to Galveston on Wednesday for $35 million in repairs.
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In 2019, state lawmakers approved the repairs, but with the condition it finds a new home once repairs are complete.
“Historically, the number of paid visitors that you need in order for the ship to be successful, the park has never really generated, not even close. Over the ... especially recent years, we look probably 80, 90,000 paid visitors a year, and we need to be 250,000 if this thing’s gonna cash flow," said Bruce Bramlett, the executive director with Battleship Texas Foundation.
Where it’ll end up permanently is still undecided.
The USS Texas hasn't been moved since 1988 when it also underwent repairs in Galveston.
Battleship Texas moving: Watch live feed of the move to Galveston
Why does Battleship Texas need repairs now?
Officials said decades of exposure to salt, foam and silt caused leaking in the hull of the 110-year-old ship.
Repairs to the ship's hull are expected to take between 12 to 14 months.
When will Battleship Texas be moved?
Tugboats are planning to pull the ship from the San Jacinto battleground site in La Porte before dawn Wednesday. It's set to arrive at Gulf Copper & Manufacturing Corporation’s shipyard in Galveston by mid-afternoon the same day.
A crew spent Monday making last-minute preps to move the ship, including loading generators to make the move as smooth and safe as possible.
During the move Wednesday, water traffic will be restricted in the Houston Ship Channel.
Moving day schedule:
- 3 a.m.: Work starts at San Jacinto
- 6 to 7:30 a.m.: Battleship Texas gets underway and enters the Houston Ship Channel.
- 11 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Battleship Texas will cross under the Fred Hartman Bridge and enter the bay.
- 2 to 3 p.m.: Battleship Texas will pass near the Texas City Dike.
- 3 to 4 p.m.: Battleship Texas will enter the Galveston Ship Channel.
- 4 to 5 p.m.: Battleship Texas will arrive at Gulf Copper Galveston.
- Late August 31 to September 1: Battleship Texas will be maneuvered onto the dry dock and lifted out of the water.
Best places to watch Battleship Texas' journey to Galveston
There are several locations you can watch the ship in motion, including:
- Bayland Island
- Texas City Dike
- Pier 21
- Seawolf Park
Will there be other opportunities to see Battleship Texas' journey?
Battleship Texas Foundation will stream the departure, for free, on its YouTube channel and Facebook page.