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For one Cape May-Lewes ferry, a final journey to the bottom of the ocean may not be such a bad thing.

The Delaware Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Control purchased the boat from the Delaware River Bay Authority for $200,000, with plans to sink it to create an artificial reef. The up-cycle project will turn the 320-foot vessel into a rich habitat for various fish species on the Atlantic Coast and a cool recreational opportunity for divers, boaters and anglers.

In its heyday, the 1970’s-era MV Twin Capes could transport nearly 900 passengers and 100 vehicles at a time, but it has been inoperable since 2013. Since it was too costly to repair or operate, the boat was docked, and three newer ferries made the daily roundtrips across Delaware Bay.

Officials will first strip the boat for equipment, electronics and engine components, which could net $230,000. Plans are to sink the ship next year onto the Del-Jersey-Land artificial reef 26 miles off the Delaware and New Jersey coast.

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