ABP announces multi-million pound project to upgrade Southampton’s cruise facilities
A multi-million pound project to upgrade Southampton’s cruise facilities is set to get underway this winter.
ABP Port of Southampton and Carnival UK have joined forces to invest £5m in improvements to the QEII Cruise Terminal for the benefit of all Carnival cruise brands. The work is vital in ensuring the city retains its title as the UK’s top cruise port and continues to provide the very best customer experience as passenger numbers continue to grow.
The improvements, which will be undertaken in two phases in 2015/16, will include the installation of a state-of-the-art ship-to-shore walkway to replace the existing walkway which was initially installed for Cunard’s Queen Mary 2. This investment will ensure a greater range of cruise ships can utilise the terminal with brand-new technology, improving passenger flow and experience.
The terminal upgrade will also include improving the existing check in, baggage and passenger x-ray areas, installing a new 46-person lift and re-organising the passenger drop off area.
Nick Ridehalgh, ABP Director, Southampton, said: “The number of cruise passengers coming through Southampton’s port continues to rise, with 1.75m expected to pass through this year. It’s therefore vital that we ensure our facilities are in the very best shape to accommodate these passengers and that they are laid out in a way that gives people a seamless and stress-free start to their holidays.”
Steven Young, director of port services & government affairs for Carnival UK, said: “We are delighted that these works, following on from recent improvements to both the Ocean and Mayflower cruise terminals, will give our guests a consistent and improved experience regardless of the terminal at which they join or leave the ship.
“As well as Cunard and P&O Cruises other Carnival brands including Princess, Holland America and Aida will benefit.”
The first phase of the work will get underway at the QEII terminal in October 2015 and is due to be completed in Spring 2016. The second phase, which includes the installation of the new ship-to-shore walkway, will be finalised in Winter 2016.
This project at the QEII terminal is the latest in a series of investments made by ABP into improving the city’s cruise facilities. Significant investment was made into upgrades at the City Cruise Terminal in conjunction with Royal Caribbean Cruise Line (RCCL) in 2014/15. Investment of £1m at the Ocean Cruise Terminal soon followed and in April this year the Mayflower Cruise Terminal reopened after a £6m revamp.