Ports North’s Port Master Planning Project has taken an important step forward with the appointment of GHD Advisory.
The appointment will see GHD undertake a detailed technical plan that will map out options for developing the Ports of Cairns and the Port of Mourilyan over a 30-year timeframe.
Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said the master planning process was fundamental to ensuring Queensland’s ports had a long-term vision for growth and expansion while protecting the environment.
“This process will present a pathway for the ports to grow in a way that respects their place alongside the reef and the environmental values shared by the communities in which they are located,” Mr Bailey said.
“Queensland’s publicly-owned ports are a critical part of the state’s supply chain and must be supported with a plan that will allow them to grow and increase trade capacity in step with our growing economy.”
Member for Cairns Michael Healy said GHD had significant experience in master planning ports across Australia.
“They understand local issues too and have recent experience in Cairns with navy, marine maintenance and small craft/reef fleet work,” he said.
“This plan will also look at how the port connects with the CityPort precinct and the Tropical North Global Tourism Hub development precinct, so there is a real opportunity to plan for growth across a range of industries.”
The Port Master Planning Project for Cairns and Mourilyan was announced in April this year.
Ports North Chairman Russell Beer said the findings from a community survey conducted in April and May would provide an important base for the GHD project team to continue to engage and seek input from key users, supply chain businesses and stakeholders around both ports.
“This master planning process is part of our fundamental commitment to supporting the economic growth of the Far North Queensland region,” Mr Beer said.
“As the region grows, so toodoes our need to ensure our ports grow with it.
“Our process involves stakeholder engagement upfront and throughout each stage of assessment. This input will help shape our Master Plans and ensure Far North Queensland interests are at the core of everything we do.
“It will inform land use, infrastructure and operational decisions in a sensible and balanced way for the next 30 years.”
The Master Plans at each port will include a range of financially viable growth and development opportunities to meet the future needs of the port, key port users and stakeholders.
These will be based on rigorous demand forecasting and operational analysis.
As part of the community engagement, a dedicated page on the Ports North website provides detailed information on the Master Planning process and will be updated regularly to keep stakeholders informed.
Drafts of the master plans for Cairns and Mourilyan are expected in 2020.