New cruise terminal at Gothenburg

07 Feb 2017
The Gothenburg Port Authority has been working actively since 2008 to market Gothenburg as a cruise destination and the number of calls has increased significantly with a record high in 2014 of 73 vessels

The Gothenburg Port Authority has been working actively since 2008 to market Gothenburg as a cruise destination and the number of calls has increased significantly with a record high in 2014 of 73 vessels

This year will be the final season in which cruise ships can dock at Frihamnen, the terminal for smaller cruise ships in the Swedish port of Gothenburg.

The Frihamnen area will form part of a major urban development scheme with the construction of homes and offices, forcing the cruise terminal to find a new location.

The new central terminal will be at Stigbergskajen in Masthugget. The quay and part of the terminal building, the Amerikaskjulet, are currently being restored and will be ready to welcome vessels from spring 2018. The new name of the terminal, America Cruise Terminal, evokes memories of the terminal’s illustrious past. It was over 100 years ago that the first Swedish American Line vessel sailed for the USA from this terminal and this historic quay is now being resurrected as a cruise ship reception centre.

Amerikaskjulet was constructed in 1912 and operated as a passenger terminal until 1975. The building was then converted into offices, although the quay was used occasionally by visiting naval vessels and school ships. Before the inaugural season in 2018, the whole of the outside of Stigbergskajen will be renovated. Ten metres of the quay is being demolished and rebuilt, the bollards will be reinforced, ramps will be constructed and parking spaces for buses will be created.

Currently the contractor Dawab is working on the quay wall installing the 10 metres of sheet steel piling. Following this work the design of the traffic layout in the area will be developed, the layout of the terminal building will be designed and waste disposal and the other requirements will be considered. Following this design stage the work will be put out to tender.

Currently the quay can accommodate ships up to 175 metres in length with a water depth alongside of 8 metres. On completion of the improvement works the maximum length for vessels calling at the America Cruise Terminal will be 225 metres which is 25 metres longer than the current maximum length that can be accommodated at Frihamnen. The new terminal is just 2 km from the city centre.

Amerikaskjulet was one of the first buildings in Gothenburg to be constructed entirely of concrete. The Swedish American Line began operating there in 1915 and it was from there that the company’s large transatlantic liners departed. The Gothenburg Port Authority has been working actively since 2008 to market Gothenburg as a cruise destination and the number of calls has increased significantly with a record high in 2014 of 73 vessels, carrying over 100,000 passengers. There has been a slight downturn since then, due largely to keen competition from other ports, particularly in Denmark. Seventeen cruise ships have already booked to use the terminal in 2018.

By Dag Pike

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