A €17 million port transformation has begun in Cherbourg as part of a larger project that will ultimately connect southwest France to the British Isles and Spain.


Port of Cherbourg, owned by Ports de Normandie

In its entirety, €61 million will be spent on all three of the Ports de Normandie’s ports of Caen-Ouistreaham, Cherbourg and Dieppe.

Five million heavy goods vehicles crossed the English channel last year either by ferry or through the tunnel, the port says, an increase of 25% over 10 years. The group has set itself the task of building the infrastructure to be able to accommodate larger vessels, expand its area and create a more efficient land transport service to complement road services.

“We are aiming to develop activity to enhance added value and promote employment across the territory, optimise the general Normandy port system, and in addition to the two major seaports, equip Normandy with a port structure of national importance, while remaining flexible and responsive,” said Hervé Morin, president of the Ports de Normandie.

Officials from Brittany Ferries, the French Railways and the maritime industry attended a breaking-ground ceremony earlier this week to mark the beginning of the new terminal’s construction.

“Beyond this structural growth, the ferry freight market is evolving and new challenges are emerging with the necessary consideration of environmental issues, Brexit and the evolution of the size of ships,” the port officials said.

Engineering works to be carried out include new terminal buildings, berths for larger ships and electric upgrading at the port.