Port of Cork to vacate city centre within eight years 

The Port of Cork Company has been holding public consultations on its ‘Port Masterplan 2050’ this week in a number of locations
Port of Cork to vacate city centre within eight years 

Michael O' Regan, Port Engineer, Tadhg O' Keeffe, Project Engineer, Tim Murphy, Head of Port Engineering, Toddy Cuthbert, Support Manager, and Stephen Ginn, Engineer ARUP at the Port of Cork’s public consultation day that was held at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork.: Picture David Creedon

The Port of Cork Company (PoCC) plans to move completely out of Cork city centre in the next eight years, as part of a €250m Masterplan for the Port that will move shipping activities to the lower harbour.

The PoCC has been holding public consultations on its ‘Port Masterplan 2050’ this week in a number of locations.

A major focus of the plan is for the PoCC to completely vacate the city centre by 2030, and vacate Tivoli by 2040, migrating all activities down to the lower harbour areas of Marino Point, Cobh, and Ringaskiddy.

“It’s not just about the Port going to the lower harbour because there are bigger ships and we have to have enough capacity for demand, it’s also about unlocking the city quays for development for urban living and sustainable active travel” said Tim Murphy, Head of Port Engineering with PoCC, speaking at the consultation day in Páirc Uí Chaoimh today.

He said that vacating Tivoli alone will unlock 150 acres for development in Cork city.

Paul O’Regan, Harbour Master with PoCC, said this will also open up the city centre as a public realm area that could be a vibrant hub for maritime festivals in the future, adding that PoCC would continue to work with Cork City Council to help manage activities in the inner city waters.

The PoCC’s move out of the city-centre quays hinges on finalising the sale of docklands to Cork City Council, but more importantly on the completion of vital land transport links, such as the M28 Cork to Ringaskiddy motorway and the re-alignment upgrade of the R624 to Cobh.

Members of the public view future plans for the harbour at the Port of Cork’s public consultation day that was held at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork. - Picture David Creedon
Members of the public view future plans for the harbour at the Port of Cork’s public consultation day that was held at Páirc Uí Chaoimh, Cork. - Picture David Creedon

“The Cork Metropolitan Area Transport Study and National Development Plan talks about how the M28 is very much a high priority for government to get completed… it is important, its recognised in every document, we just need to go away and build it,” said Mr Murphy, who added that the M28 is key to unlocking the potential of the Port of Cork.

The PoCC’s masterplan is also focused on ramping up capacity in the newly opened Cork Container Terminal for both cargo and offshore wind development.

By 2050 the PoCC plans to increase the Terminal’s capacity more than twice over, from 300,000 TEU to 800,000 TEU.

There are also plans to dedicate over 20 hectares of space in the Terminal for the assembly of wind turbines, and 10 hectares for the infrastructure needed to maintain them once erected offshore.

The PoCC will publish the finalised 2050 masterplan following the conclusion of public consultation, and have said that public feedback will be considered and where possible incorporated.

The final consultation day is in Cobh on Friday 7 October, from 1pm to 7pm in the Sirius Arts Centre.

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