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Tuesday 24 October 2017

Dublin Port given green light for historic €230m upgrade

Shipping containers are stacked at Dublin port in Dublin
Shipping containers are stacked at Dublin port in Dublin
Paul Melia

Paul Melia

Dublin Port has been given the green light for a €230m upgrade, the biggest in its history.

An Bord Pleanala has approved plans to redevelop some 3km of berths to accommodate larger ships, and deepen the entrance channel to a depth of at least 10 metres.

The Alexandra Basin Redevelopment project is the biggest single upgrade in the history of the port and will take five years to complete.

It comes as trade through the port continues to increase, with 2015 set to be a record year.

“I am delighted that An Bord Pleanála has granted Dublin Port planning permission for the ABR Project and to say that we can finance the project immediately,” chief executive Eamonn O’Reilly said.

“The engineering design works are already at an advanced stage and we expect the first phase of works to be tendered and a contractor ready to start by October 2015.”

Dublin Port is Ireland’s largest port and is one of 83 core ports across the EU.

The project will be self-financing, and funded through borrowings. The European Investment Bank (EIB) is considering providing €100m in loans.

The project involves rebuilding 42pc of the berths in the port, or 3km of the existing 7km, and increasing the depth from 6.5 metres to 10 metres.

In addition, a 10km channel stretching from the East Link Bridge to the Dublin Bay Buoy, 5km offshore, will be deepened from 7.8 metres to 10 metres. This will take six years.

Berths for cruise ships will be provided at the East Link Bridge, allowing passengers and crew to travel into the city centre by foot or on the Luas, while Alexandra Quay will be extended to 130 metres. Heritage works are also planned.

Cargo-ship capacity is measured in 20-foot container equivalent units (TEUs), and most entering Dublin Port are 1,000 TEU.

When the works are complete, ships up to 3,500 TEU will be accommodated.

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