NOAA Groundbreaking for Rhode Island Marine Operations Center


A May 6 groundbreaking event in Rhode Island marked the start of building a new $146.7 million marine operations center for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

The future homeport of the NOAA Marine Operations Center-Atlantic is planned for Naval Station Newport in Rhode Island, where the U.S. Navy awarded $146,778,932 to Skanska USA to build the new NOAA facility.

The plan includes a pier to accommodate four large vessels, a floating dock for smaller vessels, space for vessel repairs and parking, and a building to be used for shoreside support and as a warehouse. Construction is anticipated to be completed in 2027.

“The new, state-of-the-art Marine Operations Center-Atlantic facility is critical to NOAA’s mission and delivering on our commitments to regional, international and other diverse partners,” said NOAA Corps Rear Admiral Nancy Hann, director of the NOAA Commissioned Officer Corps and NOAA Marine and Aviation Operations. “Newport has always been a welcoming community to NOAA, and we are appreciative of the support from local, state and congressional leaders, as well as our mission partners at Naval Station Newport.”

Rhode Island’s Congressional delegation pushed for co-locating the NOAA base at Newport.

“NOAA is the top scientific weather and oceans agency and I was pleased to help Rhode Island land MOC-A. Naval Station Newport’s location and the years of strategic federal investments we’ve made here are really paying off. Bringing NOAA’s premiere research fleet and Atlantic operations center to the Ocean State means hundreds of jobs for Rhode Island and a brighter future for our Blue Economy,” said Senator Jack Reed.

NOAA’s fleet of 15 research and survey ships are operated, managed and maintained by NOAA Marine and Aviation Operations.