Sydney Ports Corporation’s new $57-million White Bay Cruise Terminal was trialled on April 15 with the arrival of P&O cruise liner, the Pacific Pearl. The 63 000 gross ton ship berthed at 7 am with almost 2,000 passengers disembarking for the first time through the state-of-the-art terminal.
Roads and Ports Minister Duncan Gay said this milestone highlights the NSW Government’s commitment to meeting the huge boom in demand for cruise in Sydney.
“We are just coming to the close of what has been another record Sydney cruise season with 265 ship visits and we have already taken more than 280 bookings for next season.
“Given the unprecedented growth in cruising, this new terminal is very timely indeed - its vast open plan arrivals and departures hall are designed to cater for 2,400 passengers at a
time, Mr Gay said
"We have also constructed a dedicated terminal access road to ensure minimal impact on local streets by port traffic."
"The critical elements of size, layout and capability to enforce modern maritime security requirements were already in place so when you add the ability to use the neighbouring White Bay 4 to simultaneously host a second cruise ship, White Bay has a lot going for it."
"It means Sydney can now comfortably host up to three cruise ships alongside at any one time."
"The public will also have pedestrian and cycling access to the waterfront adjacent to the Terminal when there are no ship activities – that’s the first time in 45 years the public has been able to access this waterfront."
Mr Gay said that when construction of the terminal began in March last year, consultation with all key stakeholders was a major focus.
"Leichhardt Council, local businesses and community members, along with the cruise industry, government agencies and tourism organisations, were all involved as the terminal progressed through planning, design and construction," he said.
"This was done through a wide range of general and targeted processes including structured industry and community workshops."
Minister Gay said "White Bay has always played a big role in Sydney’s economy, its commercial shipping history dating back to the mid-19th century, handling just about everything from timber and paper, coal, sugar, wheat and cement to cars and containers."
"Now as a cruise terminal, it will continue contributing to Sydney’s economy, serving not only as a cruise terminal, but as a part-time function centre serving community events on non-ship days.
Minister Gay said the NSW Government is now turning its focus to an upgrade of the Overseas Passenger Terminal – a $30-million Masterplan is now under review.