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Port of Hamburg lines up projects for 2017

Bigger time slots and more room for ships to to manoeuvre - Köhlbrand Bridge new build to begin

Hamburg Port Authority is pressing ahead with new infrastructural projects this year with particular emphasis on the condition of 80 roads and 61 railway bridges in the port, HPA announced Tuesday (January 10). Last year, 61 per cent of bridges were rated one or two compared to a mere 18 per cent in 2011. Jens Meier, CEO of HPA, said: “The improved grades of both railways and roads shows that our investments in the past years are paying off. However, we still have plenty to achieve before 2020 and want to raise the average grade of our bridges to 2.3.”

Flexible distribution of berths

Frank Horch, Senator for Economics, stressed: “The senate aims to upgrade Hamburg’s port and make it an efficient, diverse and universal harbour which is ready for the future.” Expanding key infrastructural projects are a must for remaining competitive. One key measure is adjusting the entrance to the outer harbour, which HPA aims to complete before Easter. The project would expand the tide slots during which large ships enter and exit the port and give them more room to manoeuvre. The move would allow Cruise Gate Hamburg (CGH) more flexibility when distributing berths in the Cruise Center Altona. Simulations have shown that width limits for cruise ships could be raised from 32.3 metres presently to 50 metres.

800,000 cruise ship passengers

Last year proved particularly successful for CGH with 171 arriving ships and over 722,000 passengers docking in Hamburg – an increase of 203,000 over 2015. Sacha Rougier, Manager of CGH, said: “We will top that passenger record in 2017. We are expecting around 800,000 passengers this year. Hamburg has become an a year round destination. English shipping companies in particular are very present in winter and profit from popular Christmas markets in Hamburg. The rising choice of world trips is in Hamburg’s favour.”

New build of Köhlbrand Bridge

HPA is also pressing ahead with the gradual overhaul of the south Steinwerder area in January. The 42-hectare area in the main port could hold a 1,100 metre-long quay wall and three berths for large ships and provide terminal areas in Oderhafen and more manoeuvring space. The winners of tendered concepts will be announced in mid 2017. A project to rebuild the Köhlbrand Bridge is also due to start this year. Plans for the new crossing have also taken account of ship heights based on an expert survey by DNV-GL.

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