Minister waits on cruise port re-design

| 13/04/2016 | 46 Comments
Cayman News Service

Cruise ships and tenders in the George Town harbour, Grand Cayman

(CNS): After several months of government silence on its proposed controversial cruise berthing project, the tourism minister has stated that he expects to be able to give an update on its progress in a few weeks. Moses Kirkconnell said that the ministry was still waiting to hear from the engineers about the remodeling of the designs to take the proposed piers into much deeper water and therefor reduce the impact on the marine life in the George Town Harbour.

Still apparently a central policy platform for his ministry, despite the continued opposition to the project, speculation has mounted in recent weeks that the project could still be stalled by issues surrounding the financing of the costly development. The PPM remains commitment to berthing facilities in the capital but it has made it clear that the government cannot be liable for funding it.

The administration is currently hoping that the cruise lines will be willing to foot the bill and recoup their costs from increased cruise passenger fees, thereby avoiding any need for upland development owned by the cruise lines that would compete with local merchants.

Whether or not that financing model would work or gain approval from the UK remains to be seen, but with the designs still under review, government has not yet begun any serious talks with the cruise lines and it is now very unlikely that the project will make much headway before the next election.

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  1. Anonymous says:

    kirk-bots are on the march again…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  2. Anonymous says:

    When all is said an done I can’t wait to see how the dredging has been reduced and the project goes ahead for OUR people. All the people acting like the world is coming to an end will see it don’t make a difference to our beaches or any of the diving. It’s deeper in Cayman and won’t kick up any sand or silt. This is the best move for Cayman along with the airport.

    I agree with the other post saying put Moses in charge of fixing the dump. He will get it done.

  3. Anonymous says:

    The cruise ship facility will be built

  4. Rp says:

    The reality is the this dock will not happen because cruise ships will not be interested in investing and gov has no money.

    Why would carnival spend so much money here when Cuba will cost more, the perks will be much better, the demand from US will be much higher and the proximity will save the ships fuel.

    My concern is that cruise calls will reduce significantly given the opportunities in Cuba. Both Havana and varadero are on the north side of the island less than half way to Cayman.

    Glad the gov does not have the money as they would have invested it in piers and then see that demand is reducing. Just like turtle farm.

    Focus on being exclusive rather than competing with the third world. Focus on overnight tourism, let’s get the airport modernized ASAP. That will be our future, not cruise tourism.

    • Anonymous says:

      Rp, Right now Carnival is facing a backlash from Americans because they refuse to carry Cubans in accordance with Cuban laws.So if Cuba refuses to change its laws , then Carnival might have trouble in getting passengers to fill their ships.

    • Anonymous says:

      The reality of your reason for not wanting to see the port built is just silly. Cuba will be just another stop for these cruise…more the better.

      These cruise are inaugurated from Florida, Bahamas Mexico Cayman then on to Jamaica.Cuba will fit in between mexico and Cayman, We could be silly and say that the cruise will drop Cayman because Jamaica has more to offer….not going to happen.

      Know your Geography..these routes are like a horse shoe, the ships can shut their eyes and come upon all these Islands within 4 day cruise.

      Cuba will only enhance the Caribbean cruise, and will complement the Cayman route.
      What you should be cognisant about is, the cruise lines are building bigger ships that require off loading docks…which Cayman is the only one without. Within the next 10 years these smaller ships will be scrap iron. they are not economical to operate.

      The Oil transport tankers took that economic sense and built mega ships , now instead of 35 crew to operate, it takes 15 crew members. and 4 times the cargo per Atlantic crossing.Take your head out the sand .

    • maria carwithen says:

      I agree , please don’t build the cruise dock and spoil all the snorkeling and diving in town .It will lead to less tourism.I am a tourist that has been coming to your island for 29 years.

  5. Anonymous says:

    Man moses is the only one that has a clue. He the only one getting anything done. Fixing the airport. Fixing the cruise port.
    We need to pt him in charge of the dump fix next if we want it done.

  6. Anonymous says:

    With the financial industry under constant bombardment and already shrinking in Cayman, to rise is going to be the long term bread winner for our island. If we turn our back on cruise tourism and don’t build berthing we are in huge trouble.

    • Anonymous says:

      Or so says Giora Israel, entirely unfamiliar with the unique complications of Cayman’s blue water port. Most cruise ships around the world tender, including the Genesis and Oasis class liners operating out of Perth. They may prefer a pier, paid by us, but it’s just not economically viable here.

    • Anonymous says:

      Typical scare tactics by the jewelers for a port.

      • Anonymous says:

        Speaking of the Kirks, is Just trying to justify your ignorance why you dont want the port.built,, people like you would stop progress just for your selfish ways…. this port is not about the Kirkconnells, its about Cayman prosperity and progress.
        Do you have somnething against our Caymanian whose been in business for over 100 years now…they deserve to be in our town to sell their wares. so is every other Caymanian. Just stop it…we all feel the discrimination from people like you at all levels.

  7. Anonymous says:

    how come the ppm flip-flopped on daylight savings time because of unspecified feedback from eastern districts….
    yet they want to push ahead with the dock which has considerable justified opposition throughout the community…..

  8. Anonymous says:

    Cruise tourism is necessary for Cayman, it trickles down whether the naysayers believe it or not – from employment, to duties on imports, to returning guests as stayovers rather than daytrippers, etc, etc….its unarguable (not to say there are no downsides to it)

    However, cruise piers may not be necessary for Cayman…..they become necessary if the cruiselines state (and its shown to the public, not merely hinted at by lobbyists and politicians) that they will not call at Cayman if the berths are not built

    if we don’t have to build them, we shouldnt…..but sometimes we have to do things we dont want to….please, someone get the cruiselines to state publicly what they intend to do with Cayman as a port of call if we do NOT have berths, and if we DO have berths

    then the money men can work it out based on the number of guaranteed ship calls in the coming decades in the case of both scenarios (berths/no berths)….and life moves on. Be great if we didnt have to build them, but maybe we do..

    • Anonymous says:

      actually the cruise lines are moving to larger ships which will not be able to use tenders. Thats been said.

      • Anonymous says:

        But it’s not an answer

        • Anonymous says:

          anon 836 how much more of an answer do you want. the cruise lines will mostly move out of cayman. cruise tourism pays a lot of people. we have a bunch of idiots talking about kirkbots. you people are fools.

      • Anonymous says:

        But the luxury ships tend to be the smaller ones. We continue to look to emulate situations on other islands that have not proved to bring the hoped for results…

  9. Anonymous says:

    The existing arrangements have worked well over the last 25 years and the rum shops don’t need to sell more rum cakes and rum at the expense of the environment. Our infrastructure cannot cope with greatly increased numbers (the rationale for the piers) and in any case looking to the cruise ship lines to fund the project is pie in the sky.Privately I’m sure our leaders are just “going through the motions” knowing it will never happen. Unfortunately this is costing the taxpayer a lot of money that could have been spent elsewhere.

    • I agree with your comment but lets get the Airport done FIRST not bit by bit and then concentrate on the cruise ship situation.The ships will CONTINUE to come and like you said when is too many peeps TOO MANY?On a day when there are more than 3-4 ships its total chaos on the roads and at s/ray city and forget the speed limit along the west bay road as it hell for leather for that almighty dollar!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        I agree that the airport should be built in the East , It is where it could expand.
        A Cruise ship facility being built if started today will take 2-3 years to complete. Thats a long time.
        It should enter Cayman through North sound and go into the central mangrove with the new airport. But people don’t understand the Central Mangrove will be the next huge development whenever it starts. Cheaper land will be the emphasis of new development. 7 mile beach is done. Only one man will own it all. 7 mile beach has reached US$ 200,000 per foot. East is the cheaper land and planning will allow 10-? story buildings it just makes sense

  10. Anonymous says:

    It has to happen. Thank you for all your time spent in ensuring a bright future for Caymanians, Moses. Keep doing your thing and making us proud, unlike the gambling ministers who put Cayman in a terrible place. PPM has climbed out of the garbage can put in by that same minister and now we can be proud to be Caymanian again.

  11. Anonymous says:

    All designs to date, including the EIA proposed design, will not hold the OASIS class of ship by RCCL. Ship is too big for the design. Back to the drawing board, if that was one of the major reasons for the necessity of this new berthing facility.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I think the only election promise that PPM made and will keep is that will not do anything with the dump.

  13. Fred Wood says:

    If Cayman wants to continue to be competitive in the world tourism market——It better happen !!!!!! chewing on the pencil while other areas are writing down the answer is not an option at this late date.

  14. Anonymous says:

    Built it in the Brac and let the Bracas pay for it. Then again, there is nothing like flogging a dead stinking whale is there?

  15. Anonymous says:

    We currently have 1,000s of cruise ship visitors daily and cannot afford this expense. The money can be better spent elsewhere. Don’t let special interests push forth a project Cayman doesn’t need.

  16. Anonymous says:

    Meanwhile the opening up of Cuba rolls along. The first cruise ship from Miami docks in Havana next month.

    • Travelin Man says:

      That’s wonderful! Maybe we can get away from wall-to-wall people.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yeah, Fathom’s tiny MV Adonia (with max 777 passengers) is making a much-hyped 8 day, 3 port “social impact/voluntourism” voyage, under tight constraints of people-to-people travel guidelines as set forth by the US Gov’t, and under strict supervision of Cuban officers. Not exactly the floodgates of western tourism opening – not even close.

      • Anonymous says:

        11:29 Quite right but the fact is it’s happenings should be warning enough. The floodgates may not be fully open yet but they are opening. Anyone who saw what happened in Eastern Europe (and I was there) during the early 1990s has a pretty good how fast things are going to change in Cuba once US sanctions are lifted.

    • Anonymous says:

      MSC cruise lines is home port in Havana, Cuba and still comes to Grand Cayman. I wish people not in the cruise business would research their info first before putting foot in mouth.

  17. SKEPTICAL says:

    CIG is realizing that whilst not their fault, this project should have been undertaken decades ago, and that in the current cruise ship market, it is no longer economically viable. It might be appropriate to say that – ” this ship sailed, a long time ago “.

  18. Anonymous says:

    Why don’t they just use the Cayman SkyChair port design? It’s unique and cool and ready to go, and they have most of their own financing, right? Much better than putting the next several generations of Caymanians in debt for the same ol, same ol boring type of cruise port, that is only going to end up destroying the harbour.

    See for yourself >>>

  19. Anonymous says:

    port won’t happen and definitely not under this do-nothing ppm administration….

  20. Anonymous says:

    Never going to happen…….

  21. Anonymous says:

    nah going to happen Moses, stop wasting money

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