Turning the tide for Cairns

The largest port development in Cairns’ history is now complete, providing a much-needed shot in the arm for the tropical north city as it continues its COVID-19 recovery, Queensland Government announced today.

Ports North

Crews have wrapped up works on the final stage of the Palaszczuk Government’s $127 million shipping development project, putting the finishing touches on upgrades to six of the Cairns Port wharves.

Member for Cairns Michael Healy said that the project, which began last year, would now pave the way for more job opportunities as we move out of the train wreck of COVID-19.

“Our city, our community and many of our industries have been hit hard these past couple of months. The completion of this much needed work will be a contributing factor in our city and regions recovery. Today’s milestone hopefully marks a turn in the right direction for our economy and local jobs,” Mr Healy said.

In total, more than 400,000 hours were worked on the project, which included dredging the Cairns shipping channel, building an 8km pipeline to transfer silt for re-use and restoring six wharves built more than 100 years ago.

“Around 800,000m3 of mud and silt has been dredged and 30 new berthing dolphins constructed along the wharves utilising the largest diameter steel piles ever driven in the region to allow bigger ships and more investment in our economy.

“The benefits of this project will be immense and the flow on effects for our $127 million investment will be felt for decades to come,” he added.

Transport and Main Roads Minister Mark Bailey said that Ports North, contractors and the 800 construction crew were to be congratulated on delivering the mammoth project.

Minister for Regional Development Glenn Butcher added that the milestone would open up a new chapter for the local marine industry, with vessels up to 300m including visiting naval ships, cargo carriers and cruise ships could now enter the port.