Hornblower Cruises and Events


Hornblower Cruises and Events provide’s dinner and harbor cruises at a variety of locations throughout the United States.  They are in the midst of expanding their facility at Grape Street and Navy Pier in San Diego, California.  Putting their customers first, a new passenger loading facility was designed to load passengers as efficiently and safely as possible while meeting all ADA requirements. 

They contacted Topper Industries to design, engineer, fabricate, deliver and install the new ramps, gangways and tower platform.  The challenge on this project was loading passengers with no more than a 12:1 slope at any tidal elevation.  This required a 5’ x 96’ ramp with a 5’ level rest area each 30’ and ending in an elevated platform.  Once on the platform a 5’ x 80’ gangway is hinged to a tower standing over 20’ tall that can be raised and lowered 8’ to match the tide.  The moveable platform allows customers to easily access the vessel at any tidal elevation and will meet ADA required 12:1 slope or less. 

Once the passengers are on the platform they need to board the vessel safely.  A special transition ramp was designed and installed to go from the tower platform to the vessel.  The transition ramp can move both vertically and horizontally to accommodate ship movement while moored to the pier. 

Perhaps the best part of the entire design is that many moving parts of the system can be controlled by one person operating the controls from a simple, user friendly, push button, control box.     



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