Collingwood Shipbuilding

Coordinates: 44°30′15.2″N 80°13′4.7″W / 44.504222°N 80.217972°W / 44.504222; -80.217972

Collingwood Shipbuilding was a major Canadian shipbuilder of the late 19th and 20th centuries. The facility was located in the Great Lakes and saw its business peak during the Second World War. The shipyard primarily constructed lake freighters for service on the Great Lakes but also constructed warships during the Second World War and government ships postwar. The shipyard was closed permanently in 1986 and the land was redeveloped into a new housing community.

Collingwood Dry Dock, Shipbuilding and Foundry Company
FounderJ. D. Silcox and S. D. Andrews
Defunct1986 (aged 104)
SuccessorCanadian Shipbuilding and Engineering Limited
ProductsLake freighters, Naval vessels


Formed in 1882 as Collingwood Dry Dock, Shipbuilding and Foundry Company in Collingwood, Ontario by J. D. Silcox (also contractor at the Murray Canal)[1] and S. D. Andrews[2] and renamed with the shortened name in 1892,[3] Collingwood Shipbuilding's core business was building lake freighters, ships built to fit the narrow locks between the Great Lakes.

Over the company's lifetime it built over 200 ships. During the Second World War (1940–1944), the company was contracted to build 23 warships for the Royal Canadian Navy and Royal Navy, mostly corvettes and minesweepers.

The shipyard was acquired by Canada Steamship Lines (CSL) in 1945. Business slowed in the 1970s and by the 1980s orders were in severe decline. The shipyard closed following the merger of CSL's shipbuilding interest with Upper Lakes Shipping to form Canadian Shipbuilding and Engineering Limited in 1986.[2] The last ship completed and launched by the shipyard was CCGS Sir Wilfrid Laurier for the Canadian Coast Guard. The company folded in 1986.[3]

The Shipyards waterfront communityEdit

CSL retained ownership of the land and slowly the buildings and structures of the old shipyard were demolished by 2003. After remediation of 53 acres (21 ha) of the site was completed in 2003–2004, re-development began.[4] Left vacant for almost two decades and then sold to developers Fram + Slokker. The area was renamed The Shipyards. Only the drydock basin and launch basin remain of the site's previous use and Buildings #1 and #2 were designed to pay homage to various shipyard buildings into the townhouse complex.

Beginning in 2004 the former shipyard was rezoned from industrial to commercial use. The property underwent re-development as part of Collingwood Harbour's revitalization plan. The area east of the former launch basin became home to a residential community consisting of low-rise condos, townhomes and detached homes. The former launch basin is surrounded by a boardwalk, while the area between the launch basin and the drydock is awaiting development.[5]

Other notable shipsEdit


  1. ^ Bleasdale, Ruth (2018). Rough Work: Labourers on the Public Works of British North America and Canada, 1841–1882. Toronto, Ontario: University of Toronto Press. p. 40. ISBN 978-1-48752-199-8.
  2. ^ a b "The History of Shipbuilding In Collingwood". Archived from the original on 25 April 2012. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
  3. ^ a b "Collingwood Shipbuilding, Collingwood ON". Archived from the original on 4 November 2011. Retrieved 10 November 2011.
  4. ^ "Collingwood Shipyards Site Remediation". Georgian Paving Ltd. Archived from the original on 19 December 2016. Retrieved 22 May 2021.
  5. ^ "Master Plan Concept". Archived from the original on 11 January 2020. Retrieved 22 May 2021.

External linksEdit