$127 Million Port Hub Completed


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Aug 21, 2023

$127 Million Port Hub Completed

The Queensland State Government has announced that the largest port development

The Queensland State Government has announced that the largest port development in Cairns has been completed and provided a much-needed construction injection for the tropical north during COVID-19.

The final stage of the $127 million shipping development project has been wrapped up, with the finishing touches being applied to six of the Cairns Port wharves.

Michael Healy, Member for Cairns outlined that the project, which began last year, would now pave the way for more job opportunities as we move out of the train wreck of COVID-19.

"Our city, our community and many of our industries have been hit hard these past couple of months. The completion of this much needed work will be a contributing factor in our city and regions recovery. Today's milestone hopefully marks a turn in the right direction for our economy and local jobs,"

"Around 800,000m3 of mud and silt has been dredged and 30 new berthing dolphins constructed along the wharves utilising the largest diameter steel piles ever driven in the region to allow bigger ships and more investment in our economy".

"The benefits of this project will be immense and the flow on effects for our $127 million investment will be felt for decades to come." Mr Healy said.

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Project Benefits– enabling future expansion of the HMAS Cairns Base by relocating the existing cargo swing basin– allowing improved channel access for the existing Royal Australian Navy vessels– allowing larger visiting overseas Navy vessels (in particular US Navy carriers) to enter the Port for rest and relaxation visits– reduced tidal and loading restrictions on bulk cargo ships accessing the Port of Cairns– increased resilience for the Port of Cairns against an extreme weather event

In total, more than 400,000 hours were worked on the project, which included dredging the Cairns shipping channel, building an 8km pipeline to transfer silt for re-use and restoring six wharves built more than 100 years ago.

Mark Bailey, Transport and Main Roads Minister outlined that the Ports North, contractors and the 800 construction crew were to be congratulated on delivering the mammoth project.

"Their efforts are part of the Palaszczuk Government's $1.45 billion spend for better roads, transport and jobs in the Far North," "Together with projects like the $152 million Smithfield Bypass and soon-to-start Bruce Highway upgrade from Edmonton to Gordonvale, we’re strengthening supply chains, bolstering the economy and supporting jobs." Mr Bailey said.

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Glenn Butcher, Minister for Regional Development outlined that the milestone would open up a new chapter for the local marine industry, with vessels up to 300m including visiting naval ships, cargo carriers and cruise ships could now enter the port.

"It is expected to add $144.6 million in value to the Queensland economy every year as we unite and recover for Queensland jobs,"

"A deeper and wider shipping channel also provides the potential for the Royal Australian Navy's larger ships and US naval carriers to berth in Cairns, enabling future expansion of defence activities in the region." Mr Butcher said.

Russell Beer, Chairman for Ports North outlined that the Project Team will now work through all the required close-out matters over the coming months to bring an official end to thee Cairns Shipping Development Project.

"This will certainly mark a special moment for the organisation" "This Project has been many years in the making and the outcomes clearly demonstrate the ability of Ports North to undertake major capital projects including capital dredging works to deliver economic benefits while protecting the environment"

"It has at times been challenging, frustrating but inevitably hugely satisfying. Our Project team must be congratulated for its flexible and innovative thinking and good old tenacity in getting the Project over the line.

"We can only look forward to a time, hopefully in the near future, when we begin to see the projected benefits this Project will bring to Cairns and the region." he said.

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Project timeline:– June 2018 – expressions of interest sought for Cairns Shipping Development project– December 2018 – the approved project business case– April 2019 – construction starts on pipeline to transfer dredged silt and mud– July 2019 – project to dredge around 800,000m3 of mud and silt begins– August 2019 – contract for wharves refurbishment announced– September 2019 – dredging complete– June 2020 – wharves refurbishment and Cairns Shipping Development project complete

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Source: Information, Drawings and ImagesAll article information is sourced and available for review from referenced locations.– Media Release: $127m Port hub revamp turns the tide for Cairns– Information: Cairns Shipping– Images: Instagram and Cairns Shipping– Interactive Image: Google Streetview and Aerial

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