Port of Newcastle and the Port Authority of NSW have welcomed the NSW Government’s commitment of $12.7 million for a permanent multi-purpose cruise terminal facility at the Port of Newcastle.
A permanent terminal will strengthen Newcastle as an international cruise destination and secure the long-term future of cruise shipping in the Hunter.
It will be built at the Channel Berth within the Port’s Carrington Precinct which meets current and future cruise industry requirements including berthing for vessels up to 320 metres in length.
“Cruise shipping currently delivers around $11 million per annum to the local economy, according to the Australian Cruise Association,” Geoff Crowe, Port of Newcastle CEO, said.
“The cruise terminal will enable the Port to attract more cruise ships. Purpose-built facilities will provide a professional welcome for passengers and will position Newcastle as a home port where ships can start and finish their destination in Newcastle.”
“Home porting has the potential to deliver additional economic value to the region via more cruise ships, more interstate and international visitors and an opportunity for local businesses to supply goods and services for the provisioning of ships. Additionally, it complements the growing capacity of Newcastle Airport.”
The funding will enable the construction of a purpose built terminal of approximately 3,000 square metres, a dedicated car park, enhanced wharf infrastructure and improved accessibility for ship provisioning. When not in use by cruise ships, the terminal could be used for occasional events, navy vessel visits, or other port uses.
It builds on an earlier State and Federal Government commitment (June 2016) of $800,000 for the upgrade of mooring bollards at the Channel Berth, which will enable the port to host larger, heavier ships carrying up to 3,500 passengers. The mooring bollards upgrade will commence later this year and is due to be completed in mid 2017.
Concurrently, the terminal will enter the detailed design phase. Construction of the terminal is due to commence in mid 2017 and will be completed in 2018.
“Newcastle is a diverse port with 25 cargoes, and we are committed to contributing to the growth and diversification of the Hunter region’s economy. This funding is an important step towards that,” Geoff concluded.
Image | A concept drawing of a cruise terminal. The design will be further developed during the detailed design phase.
Port of Newcastle is a major Australian trade gateway handling 4,600 ship movements and 166 million tonnes of cargo each year. Its annual trade worth more than $29 billion to the New South Wales economy, enabling businesses across the state to successfully compete in international markets.
With a deepwater shipping channel operating at 50% of its capacity, significant port land available and enviable access to national rail and road infrastructure, Port of Newcastle is positioned to further underpin the prosperity of the Hunter, NSW and Australia.
As custodians of the region’s critical asset, Port of Newcastle is diversifying its trade as it strives to create a safe, sustainable and environmentally and socially responsible Port that realises its potential.