Proposed modifications to the Eden Cruise Wharf could see vessels up to 370 m long and carrying almost 7000 passengers permitted to berth in the port overnight, seven days a week.
As the first cruise ships in two years make their way back to Australian shores, consultation will commence this week to transform the Port of Eden into a destination of choice for some of the world’s largest cruise liners.
The local community and interested groups are invited to provide feedback on the detailed proposal to modify the wharf, which includes increasing the number of vessels permitted to visit the wharf each year and allowing vessels up to 370 m long to berth.
The revised proposal would also permit non-cruise ships greater than 100 m in length to carry out operational activities, such as loading and unloading.
Minister for Transport and Veterans David Elliott says the multi-award winning Eden Welcome Centre is the ocean gateway to the Sapphire Coast and Bega Valley and the upgrades will unlock the region’s full economic potential.
“There has been growing demand from the cruise and shipping industries and the Royal Australian Navy to expand the use of existing facilities,” Mr Elliott says.
“With Eden strategically located between Sydney, Melbourne and New Zealand cruise destinations, we know there is an appetite for increased cruise visits, and modifications would allow larger vessels to add this beautiful part of NSW to their itineraries.
“We want to support local business and communities by better using the existing infrastructure at Eden to deliver greater economic opportunities for a region that has done it tough over the past few years – through drought, fires and the pandemic.”
While the proposed modifications would allow vessels to stay at berth overnight, seven days a week, the embarking and disembarking of passengers and general cruise ship activities would remain restricted to between 7 am and 10 pm.
Consultation with community groups and stakeholders over the next few weeks will inform an environmental assessment report for planning authorities to consider.
The cruise industry complements the Sapphire Coast’s existing visitor market of approximately one million visitors per year with cruise passengers spending around $390 per day when on shore.
A $44 million wharf extension was completed in August 2019.
To register interest for updates and to be notified when you can have your say on the proposal, send an email to EdenCruiseFacilityMOD3@portauthoritynsw.com.au
Original Article published by Katrina Condie on About Regional.