La Spezia to repurpose container terminal as luxury waterfront
The Port Authority of La Spezia, in Northern Italy, plans to turn an existing container terminal and warehousing area into a new triangular pier for passenger ships.
Under the terms of the agreement, some 500,000 ha of Calata Paita – which currently serves various cargo handling purposes as a container yard, bulk handling area, railyard and terminal, and warehousing – will instead be repurposed as a docking area for passenger vessels from the beginning of 2022. An additional 150,000 ha will be made available form September 2022.
The full scope of work will also include dredging the access channels and basin to 15m, which will render the port more than capable of handling the largest cruise vessels.
Like other ports in Italy, which was (were?) dealt a major economic blow throughout the Covid-19 pandemic as well as some of the worst health consequences in Europe, La Spezia port has weathered a major drop in volumes in 2020, amounting to -15.2%. (Volumes in 2019 were already slightly down from record highs in 2018.) However many of its Italian peers have suffered even greater setbacks; Volumes in Genoa were -19.5%; and Naples recorded a decrease of -21.6% in 2020.