White Bay cruise terminal welcomes first ship

White Bay cruise terminal welcomes first ship

first_imgSydney’s controversial $57 million White Bay Cruise Terminal received its first cruise vessel this morning with P&O’s Pacific Pearl docking with 2,000 passengers aboard.New South Wales Roads and Ports Minister Duncan Gay said the arrival was a milestone, that could give “unprecedented growth” for the industry.“Its vast arrivals and departures hall is designed to cater for 2,400 passengers at a time,” he explained.Mr Gay added that the terminal access road would minimise traffic disruption on roads around Balmain and Rozelle, a win for locals.”The public will also have pedestrian and cycling access to the waterfront adjacent to the terminal when there are no ship activities,” he said.”That’s the first time in 45 years the public has been able to access this waterfront.”The re-location of the cruise terminal to White Bay from Darling Harbour, in preference to a new cruise terminal at Garden Island, has been mired in controversy, with the navy refusing to give up its harbour side base, leaving Sydney with only one CBD and ocean side of the Harbour Bridge cruise terminal at Circular Quay.In the meantime, over at Botany Bay, the government says  that fears a multimillion-dollar cruise ship terminal could be built at Port Botany by its new private operator without development consent are the result of ”confusion”, with the announcement on Friday that the NSW Ports consortium is paying $4.31 billion for a 99-year lease, a week after submissions closed on the proposed planning changes to accompany privatisation.The government said this would give Ports NSW powers similar to those of its present operator, the publicly owned Sydney Ports Corporation, but the freight industry says is unclear about the extent of the changes and has expressed concern they may have significant consequences for container terminal operators and the public.Patrick Terminals has raised the ”significant issue” of one clause in the draft State Environmental Planning Policy covering the type of development to be permitted, which says that wharf, boating or port facilities may be built without development consent ”if the development has a capital investment of more than $100 million”.Patrick Terminals go on to say, ”for example, according to the wording in this provision, construction of a cruise-line terminal and associated infrastructure could be carried out without development consent”. Pacific Pearl. Image: P&O Cruises Source = eTB Cruise Expertlast_img read more