The non-profit group Artificial Reefs of the Keys (ARK) plans to sink the General Hoyt S. Vandenberg off Key West, Florida in 2006. This artificial reef will create new marine habitat and reduce pressure on the fragile coral reef system in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
The ship is over 520 feet long, and displaces 13,000 tons. It will lie in 140′ of water with many large areas just 40′ below the surface. It will be towed from the MARAD Ghost Fleet and cleaned to exacting environmental standards.
The Vandenberg was chosen not only for its stability, but also for its history. Built in 1944, it was first a troop transport serving in both WWII theaters, then carried refugees after the war. During the Cold War, the US Air Force used it in the early space program.
For details about how to help sink the ship, visit the ARK website at www.bigshipwrecks.com.