Construction has begun on Lyttelton Port Company’s cruise berth.
The cruise berth is located between the entrance to Inner Harbour and Cashin Quay. It will become the first custom-built cruise facility in New Zealand specifically designed to accommodate the largest cruise ships in the world.
The cruise berth is due to open for 2020-2021 summer cruising season. It will be able to accommodate all sizes of cruise liners from around the world, including the world’s largest cruiser which is 362 m long and carries over 8,000 passengers and crew.
Prior to the earthquakes cruise vessels were able to berth in Lyttelton Harbour. The new facility will provide an attractive experience for cruise visitors upon arrival and a boost for tourism industry of Canterbury and retail businesses in Christchurch.
Image: Port of Christchurch (Lyttelton, New Zealand)
The new berth is a major part of Lyttelton Port Recovery Plan created in consultation with the community and approved in 2015 by the Minister for Earthquake Recovery.
Engineers designed a berth which will withstand seismic events and ensure vessels are safe in the waves, especially the southerly storms and north-west winds which can buffet the area.
With Lyttelton unable to welcome cruise ships for the last few years, the vessels have been berthing in Akaroa, which put pressure on Akaroa and the community has been important in enabling Christchurch to stay connected to cruise industry.