From a U.S. Army Corps of Engineers News Release
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers St. Louis District offers the public an opportunity to tour the largest diesel towboat operating on the Mississippi River at Cape Girardeau on Aug. 17. The tour is offered to the public at no cost.
Public open houses aboard the Motor Vessel (M/V) Mississippi will take place Saturday, Aug. 17 from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. along the riverfront.
The M/V Mississippi, which will host the Mississippi River Commission’s (MRC) annual low-water inspection trip and associated public hearing Aug. 16 at City Riverfront in Alton, Ill., is 241-feet long and 58-feet wide. The 6,300 horsepower vessel serves as a working towboat 90 percent of the time.
Also a passenger boat, the vessel houses 22 staterooms, a dining room that seats 85 and a conference room that seats 115 people. The MRC flagship can accommodate 150 passengers.
The vessel’s primary mission is to move barges in support of bank stabilization work on the lower Mississippi River. Each spring and late summer, the MRC conducts a series of public meetings aboard the vessel, with the late summer trip including the St. Louis area.
The MRC, established in 1879, uses the M/V Mississippi to host public hearings, a process unique to the Mississippi River Commission and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, that allow the public a greater voice in shaping federal policy by discussing their concerns with those individuals responsible for improving the condition of the river, fostering navigation, promoting commerce, and reducing flood risk along the watershed.
For additional information the M/V Mississippi or the Mississippi River Commission, visit the Mississippi Valley Division’s website: http://www.mvd.usace.army.mil. For more information on the public hearings, visit www.mvs.usace.army.mil/home/mrc2013.aspx.