More business is set to sail into Wearside thanks to £1million-worth of improvement works to a port.
Port of Sunderland has announced that Jubilee Quay – the third largest of its 11 quays - will be redeveloped, with a new asphalt hardstanding that will allow it to be used for the shipments of bulk and project cargoes.
Port of Sunderland is a fast-growing port, and infrastructure projects such as this one serve to accelerate that growth, allowing us to take on more business, and expand our capabilities.Matthew Hunt, Port of Sunderland director
The project, which will see earthworks, surfacing and drainage work carried out on the site, will allow the port to take on more business, and it is hoped that – in the longer term - it will make the port a more attractive inward investment proposition.
Bosses have also commissioned the construction of two new lighting masts and provision of a new dockside handrail, which will ensure the site remains operational when light levels are low.
Work will be undertaken by North East construction firm Owen Pugh.
Matthew Hunt, director of Port of Sunderland, said that the redevelopment project is expected to take three months to complete.
Mr Hunt said: “Port of Sunderland is a fast-growing port, and infrastructure projects such as this one serve to accelerate that growth, allowing us to take on more business, and expand our capabilities.
“We have seen an extensive programme of investment at Port of Sunderland, and all of this is helping to create new opportunities for us, and to unlock the vast potential that exists here.
“With more of our quays becoming operational, and of course, some of the major investment made to date – that has included the purchase of two cranes, one a heavy-lift crane, and of course the recent reconnection of our rail lines – we are more capable than ever and better placed than ever before to compete on a bigger stage.”
The 120m long quay is located in the port’s Hudson Dock, on the west side of the port.
The area is connected to the port’s newly reinstated rail lines and will be an ideal location for handling rail-borne cargoes to and from the port.
The latest project, worth £400,000, follows major work at the port’s Greenwell’s Quay – located on the northern side of the port – which has also been resurfaced.
The combined value of the contracts is almost £1million.
Councillor Paul Watson, leader of Sunderland City Council, and chairman of the Port of Sunderland board, said: “Sunderland is a fast-changing city.
“There is real momentum now, in terms of the regeneration that is underway right across Sunderland, and the work at the port is an important part of this.
“The city has a rich heritage, and has long been forging a strong economy from its waterways; since 2010, we have seen this come full circle.
“This work at the port, teamed with the project to reconnect its rail lines, investment in new equipment and indeed the forthcoming completion of a third Wear crossing, will see Port of Sunderland better connected and facilitated than ever before.
“We believe the port is now at a stage to realise its vast potential and compete on a national stage.”
He added: “Every single one of the projects the city council is delivering at the moment feed in to a bigger city vision, and we see the port – once again – at the heart of economic regeneration in Sunderland.”