The Port of Felixstowe has today [9th May 2008] announced the commencement of construction work on Phase I of its Felixstowe South Reconfiguration scheme.
The first 440 metres of quay are scheduled to be available by April 2010, with the entirety of Phase I being fully operational by September of that year. This initial phase will create an additional 730 metres of deep-water quay, dredged to -16 metres alongside; the quay will be equipped with seven state-of-the-art quayside cranes, able to accommodate the largest container ships in the world.
Chris Lewis, Chief Executive Officer of Hutchison Ports (UK) Limited (‘HPUK’), which owns the Port of Felixstowe, said:
“After a lengthy consent process, the Port is pleased to finally be able to start construction of the Felixstowe South Reconfiguration. There is a shortage of deep-water container terminal capacity, and this development confirms that Felixstowe will be the first major UK port to provide much-needed additional capacity for deep-sea container operators.”
“As the UK’s leading container port, it is important that we are able to provide sufficient quality of deep-water facilities required to support UK container traffic growth. Felixstowe enjoys an unrivalled position close to the major trade routes, and Felixstowe South will ensure that we remain the UK’s premier port for the foreseeable future.”
Phase II is currently expected to be operational by 2014. The new development, when completed, will create a total of four new deep-water berths, with a total length of 1,285 metres, and will be equipped with 13 ship-to-shore gantry cranes. This will provide overall capacity of 5.3 million TEUs per annum at Felixstowe alone.
Additionally, HPUK have a 10-year planning consent at Bathside Bay, in Harwich, which provides the capability for further expansion, and increases the available capacity at HPUK’s Haven Ports to more than 7 million TEUs per annum.
The multi-million-pound construction contract has been awarded to Costain Limited. Landguard Terminal will remain operational during the construction of Phase I, and will continue to service its existing customers.