Australian billionaire Clive Palmer announced on Monday that he is paying to develop and sail the Titanic II, a ship that will feature the same design (above water) as the original Titanic while offering modern day navigation and safety features.
According to the billionaire the ship:
“Will be every bit as luxurious as the original Titanic, but … will have state-of-the-art 21st-century technology and the latest navigation and safety systems,” Palmer said in a statement. He called the project “a tribute to the spirit of the men and women who worked on the original Titanic.”
The announcement comes on the 100th anniversary of the original Titanic’s fatal voyage.
Palmer built his $5.2 billion fortune in the real estate business where he has served many of the world’s tourists through his investments along Australia’s Gold Coast. Later Palmer would become a coal mining magnate and then move on to become the fifth richest person in Australia.
At a news conference on Monday morning Clive Palmer said other attempts to build a Titanic replica failed because the money needed to build those ships and commission a shipyard could never be raised although he did not give a cost estimate for the new project.
In the meantime this is just one of four luxury cruise ships Palmer has commissioned to be built by CSC Jinling Shipyard.
According to Palmer the new diesel-powered ship will have four smoke stacks like the original however they will be purely decorative in nature.
Unlike the original Titanic the part of the ship that exists under the water will change with Palmer relying on welding rather than rivets and a bulbous bow for better fuel efficiency. The ship will also have larger rudder and bow thrusters to ensure increased maneuverability.
While compared to modern day ships the Titanic will be small in stature, Palmer’s newly formed cruise ship company hopes to capitalize on the high end luxury market.