After years in the making, construction on the new $44 million project to extend the Port of Eden in New South Wales has begun.
The project will transform the capabilities of the port by allowing vessels over 300m in length to berth in Snug Cove for the very first time and help turn the town into a major cruise destination.
Approval for the project was announced in July 2017.
In November 2017, an eight-week-long dredging project removed 231,500 cubic metres of sediment from Eden’s seabed to prepare the port for visits from some of the world’s largest cruise ships.
Following surveying work by the Port Authority, Waterway Constructions have now begun work to drive 127 steel pylons into the seabed to create the foundations of the 110m wharf.
Following the project’s approval in 2017, Member for Bega, Andrew Constance, said the the upgrade would finally enable larger cruise ships of up to 325m to berth along the wharf, and allow the port to receive 40-60 cruise ships visits per annum, and substantially increase the 20,000 cruise ship visitors to the region who arrived during the 2016/17 financial year.
“The Port of Eden is equidistant between Sydney and Melbourne, located approximately 40km from the NSW and VIC borders. It is the third deepest natural harbour in the Southern Hemisphere, making it ideal for large vessels.
“This working port is also a premier location for whale watching, an emerging cruise destination, and home to one of the largest fishing fleets in NSW. It is also home to Snug Cove, a popular refuge for yachts.”
Mr Constance said an additional $10 million has been provided by Transport for NSW for the separate Safe Harbour project, which will provide safer anchorage for local and visiting vessels within Snug Cove in addition to protecting the existing port infrastructure.
Jointly funded by the Australian Government, NSW Government and Bega Valley Shire Council, the Eden Breakwater Wharf Extension Project aims to cement Eden’s place on the Australian cruise map and drive economic growth in the region.
Eden is becoming increasingly popular as a destination for the cruise industry, with 15 cruise ships visiting the port town over the 2017/2018 cruise season — up from 14 visits during 2016/17.
The project is expected to be completed in 2019.