St. Kitts to expand cruise shipping port infrastructure — New cruise pier to be constructed at Port Zante
Basseterre, May 15, 2013 – The Government of St. Kitts & Nevis has announced that it will grow the country’s cruise shipping capacity shortly when it undertakes the development of a second cruise pier at Port Zante in Basseterre.
The project will be carried out in a public-private sector joint venture arrangement between the St. Christopher Air and Sea Ports Authority (SCASPA), a State Corporation, and a United States based company – Cashman Inc. of Massachusetts. The construction of a second cruise pier will facilitate the on-going impressive growth in the cruise sector that the St. Kitts Port has been experiencing.
Minister responsible for International Transport, Richard Skerritt, said, “We believe we have found the right partner to help us achieve our growth objectives as far as cruise port development is concerned. This construction project will also help us to achieve sustainability of the high levels of customer satisfaction that our destination has become well known for in recent years.”
Construction of the new pier is scheduled to commence in October of this year (2013) and complete in time for the 2014 cruise season. Vice President of Jay Cashman Inc, David Vingiano said “We’re excited to be partnering with St. Kitts on this very important project that will ensure the island continues to grow as one of the region’s top cruise destinations. We look forward to working with all local interests as well as the cruise lines over the coming months to start work on this project”
The signing of a related Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) will take place in a brief ceremony on Friday, May 17th at 10.00 a.m. at the St. Kitts Marriott Resort. According to SCASPA CEO, Jonathan Bass, “The signing of the MOU will highlight a new wave of investment activity by SCASPA to improve and expand its operations at its two seaports and at the Robert Llewellyn Bradshaw International Airport”.
The other projects that are being undertaken by SCASPA include the construction of a Breasting Dolphin at the Cargo Port which will facilitate the berthing of larger vessels, this to be completed by October 2013; the construction of a one Megawatt Solar Energy Farm at the Airport, which is scheduled to be completed by the end of August; the replacement of the 25 year-old runway lighting cables at the Airport which is expected to be completed by the end of August; and the designing of a new Master Plan for the Airport which will include the reconfiguration of the interior of the Terminal to improve its functionality and carrying capacity. The SCASPA CEO said that the Private Jet Terminal that started construction one year ago is nearing completion and should be operating within the next three to four months, although an actual opening date has not yet been set.
2013 therefore promises to be a significant year for SCASPA as the organization makes major moves forward to enhance its facilities and operations in order to help take St. Kitts & Nevis to the forefront of international travel and trade.