An artist rendering of the guided-missile frigate. The Navy awarded a contract option Thursday to build its second Constellation-class frigate. Image courtesy of U.S. Navy
May 20 (UPI) -- The Navy has awarded a $553.9 million contract option to Fincantieri Marinette Marine to build a second Constellation-class guided missile frigate, the service announced Thursday.
The future USS Congress is designed to have multi-mission capability to conduct air warfare, anti-submarine warfare, surface warfare, electronic warfare, and information operations, the Navy said.
"The Navy Program Office is pleased to award the option for the USS Congress (FFG 63) to our industry partner Fincantieri Marinette Marine," Capt. Kevin Smith, major program manager for Constellation Class Frigate, said in the Navy's release. "As the second ship of the Constellation Class Frigate Program, the USS Congress will provide a highly capable, next-generation surface combatant that our Navy and Nation needs."
The vessel will be built at Fincantieri's shipyard in Marinette, Wisc., where preparations are currently being made for the construction of its sister ship, the USS Constellation, the Navy said.
According to the Pentagon's contract announcement, other work on the contract will be performed in Boston, New Orleans, Crozet, Va., and several other U.S. worksites.
The USS Congress' name was announced in December by then-Navy Secretary Kenneth J. Braithwaite.
As of December the vessel is expected to be delivered in 2026, with the Pentagon's more recent announcement saying work is expected to be completed by January 2027.