The Navy Yard
Building 545, 4701 S. 16th St.
MISSION: Work with the International Fleet Support Office to transfer assets to friendly foreign navies, transition ships from the fleet for storage and disposal, preserve our naval heritage through ship donations, enhance marine ecosystems through artificial reefing, and protect the environment through ship dismantling and recycling.
The Navy Inactive Ships Office manages U.S. Navy ships and craft that have reached the end of their life cycle. This office is responsible for planning, programming, budgeting and executing the Navy’s inactivation and disposal of conventionally powered surface ships and craft. After decommissioning or cessation of normal ship operations, inactive Navy ships are delivered to one of the three inactive ships on-site maintenance offices: Bremerton, Washington; Philadelphia; or Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.
Philadelphia has by far the most ships with 32 in its inventory. Thanks in part to the effort of Philadelphia’s inactive ships program, the Navy has successfully reduced its inventory of inactive conventionally powered ships from nearly 200 in 1997 to approximately 60 today.
Moored in the hallowed spots along the historic Delaware River, the Charleston, Mobile, El Paso and Nashville now float silent. Casting the largest shadow in the shipyard, the aircraft carrier ex-John F. Kennedy still supplies active ships with important parts as do many of these other ships. The program of removing parts and material for use in active ships saves the Navy millions annually.
Even after the Base Realignment and Closure Commission closed major portions of the installation in 1991, the inactive ships program remains a vibrant cornerstone of Navy programs at the Philadelphia Navy Yard Annex.