The cruise industry’s attempts to persuade the state government to start the long journey towards a second terminal at Botany Bay received another set back this week when Bayside Council passed a motion restating its strong opposition to the project.
Australia’s cruise growth figures have suffered for two years running because NSW Ports have only capacity for one ship at the Overseas Passenger Terminal and two ships at White Bay.
In the coming cruise season, many lines like Princess Cruises have put a record number of ships at ports around the country to try and offset the capacity issues in New South Wales.
The NSW State Government is considering Yarra Bay or Molineux Point, on the northern side of Botany Bay. Former Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull ruled out Garden Island, despite increased capacity for Sydney being a priority infrastructure project.
Last week’s Bayside Council meeting supported a Notice of Motion put forward by Councillors Scott Morrissey and Christina Curry that the council strongly opposes a new passenger cruise-ship terminal in the area.
Bayside will send letters to NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian, and the new Minister responsible for ports, Andrew Constance, Minister for Transport and Roads, reiterating the council’s strong opposition to either Yarra Bay or Molineux Point being used.
Local concerns include traffic congestion, environmental destruction, loss of open green space and flow-on land-use pressures. Local people are also worried about dredging causing erosion to local beaches.
The state government needs to start the process of testing the environmental impact, as well as consulting with local groups soon if it is to use Port Botany as an alternative. The Labor Party has stated it is opposing any plans to site a new cruise development in the area.
It is believed the state government is also looking at ways to increase capacity in Sydney Harbour.