A GBP 12 million package of investment due to support further growth in cruise industry sector is beginning at Port of Southampton.
Ocean Terminal is now being upgraded to accommodate the increasing demand from bigger ships to visit Southampton. The work, which will take just more than a year to finish, will further strengthen the position of the port as Northern Europe’s major cruise port.
Iona is the next generation of PandO UK ships, and the first British cruise liner powered by LNG (liquefied natural gas). The vessel is currently being built at Meyer Werft shipyard in Papenburg Germany and scheduled for launch in May 2020.
P&O Iona is the first of two new vessels for P&O Cruises, with the next on order to be delivered in 2022. The additional work to accommodate the new ships (each with passenger capacity 5200) will increase Ocean Terminal's capacity by 50%.
Along with quayside's infrastructure improvements as well as within the terminal itself, the 2,000 roof-mounted solar panel facility is planned for expansion, further improving the environmental credentials of the port.
Currently, Port Southampton handles over 2 million passengers annually, with over 500 cruise ship calls. Each visit generates around GBP 2 million for the local economy.