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State gives $500,000 toward Battleship NC repairs

WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) — The Battleship North Carolina is getting help from the state to preserve the aging landmark.

The state’s World War II memorial will get $500,000 from the Office of State Budget and Management’s Repair and Renovation Contingency Reserve to repair the ship’s thinning hull.

“Our administration values the wealth of North Carolina history that hinges upon the upkeep and support of the Battleship North Carolina,” Gov. Pat McCrory said in a statement. “We are committed to supporting thorough and efficient repairs of this storied ship.”

The Navy told the Battleship in 2009 it needed a plan to dry-dock the ship or work with the Navy to get rid of the ship.

Normally ships like this are taken out of the water every few years for inspection, but the Battleship has not been taken out of the water since the 1940s. It came to Wilmington in the early 1960s after donors saved it from being scrapped.

“These funds will begin the permitting and engineering portion of the USS North Carolina Battleship hull repair project,” Battleship executive director Capt. Terry Bragg said in a news release.

According to the governor’s office, the money will also help pay for a geotechnical investigation and diagnostic boring approximately 50-75 feet below the Battleship’s surface level. Findings from the research will predicate the structure of a proposed cofferdam that will allow the battleship’s hull to be repaired on site.

Battleship staff has previously said the repair plan could cost up to $15 million, but nothing is certain until the underwater work is done.

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