Viking Cruises says 'no' to Mississippi River
TRI STATES —
A few towns in the Tri States were dreaming of a Viking invasion at their riverfront docks.
Those dreams are now gone but the realities of the Hannibal and Fort Madison riverfronts remain bright.
Viking Cruise Lines have informed Hannibal and Fort Madison of its decision to terminate discussions to build ships in the United States for use on the Mississippi River.
Fort Madison City Manager David Varley tells KHQA that the city had money set aside to accommodate the Viking Cruise ships' docking at the riverfront.
Varley says the City of Fort Madison, Fort Madison Partners, and Fort Madison Economic Development will now focus on other projects for the riverfront.
The money set aside for the Viking project will be used for a new riverfront project.
The City of Hannibal is completely changing the face of its riverfront over the next five years.
Viking Cruise Lines was set to be one of many riverboats to dock at the newly revitalized riverfront and downtown of Hannibal.
Hannibal Parks and Recreation Director Andy Dorian says the change from Viking Cruise Lines changes nothing for Hannibal.
Multiple projects have recently been approved by Hannibal City Council as well as a $6.5 million project to make significant improvements to Highway 61 in early 2018 by the Missouri Department of Transportation.
Dorian says the Viking Cruise Lines would have been a nice addition but was not a necessity to the success of Hannibal's Riverfront.