Multi million pound work starts at port

EXPANSION of Felixstowe port is underway – £60 million worth of work executives hope will safeguard its status as one of the world's most important container terminals.

By Richard Cornwell

EXPANSION of Felixstowe port is underway – £60 million worth of work executives hope will safeguard its status as one of the world's most important container terminals.

Just three years ago, the port was ranked number 14 in the world, but has now slipped to 20th in the latest ports' league table.

But executives are not worried at all – and believe that within a few years Felixstowe will hold a higher position than it ever has before.


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Work has started on the first of two massive multi-million pound developments which will almost double the port's capacity to 5.2m boxes.

When these are complete, throughput is expected to rise to record levels, pushing Felixstowe up the league table, generating jobs and a providing a huge boost to the local economy.

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"The Trinity extension will help ease the immediate pressure that UK container ports are facing and the redevelopment of the southern part of the Port of Felixstowe will help provide the capacity required beyond that," said Paul Davey, corporate affairs manager for Hutchison Ports (UK).

Contractors have started the landside works on the new Trinity Terminal extension, which will provide a further 270 metres of quay. Dredging – the channel approach will be deepened to -14.5 metres continuous with the extension, and alongside the berth to -15 metres – and piling will begin soon.

Costain Limited has the £28 million civil engineering contract for the work, which will also provide 15 hectares of additional container storage space and a third rail terminal.

Total cost of the project, which will include new cranes and other equipment, will be around £60m. It is expected to be fully operational in 12 months

The southern expansion project – which experts reckon could cost up to £250 million – will involve filling in the 1880s Dock Basin and converting the old P&O ro-ro berths and Landguard Terminal to deep-water terminals.

The redevelopment will increase the quay length available for container handling by close to 1,000 metres, giving a total south quay length of up to 1,400m – meaning the port will have almost four kilometres metres of quays in total.

There will also be spin-offs for the community as the project will include improvements to the Viewing Area and a purpose-built berth for the Harwich-Felixstowe-Shotley foot ferry.

n Hong Kong is the world's top port, handling 18.6 million boxes a year. Felixstowe in 20th handles 2.8m.

WEBLINK: www.portoffelixstowe.co.uk

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