PLANS for a second Victorian container port are continuing to move ahead, with Victorian Ports Minister David Hodgett last week announcing the release of Expressions of Interest (EOI) for four key feasibility-phase work packages for the Port of Hastings expansion project that will help inform a final development decision from the Victorian Government.
The EOIs cover four work packages including port planning and design, environmental and social, hydrodynamics and legal services, while work packages for commercial and economics advisory and risk management will soon progress directly to a Requests for Tender stage.
According to the Port of Hastings Authority, the work packages will provide the information required to guide the project through an environmental impact assessment and statutory approval process. They will also form the part of a detailed business case that aims to demonstrate the Port of Hastings as an attractive investment for both the public and private sectors.
"The EOI process will gather a team of specialists to guide and inform the Port of Hastings container expansion project through the feasibility phase of this major infrastructure project," Mr Hodgett said.
"The Victorian Coalition Government has provided $110 million over four years to kick start the development of the port, and accelerate planning for a multi-billion dollar container port, capable of handling 8 to 9 million containers annually."
The Minister said that with the Port of Melbourne expected to reach its capacity in the mid-2020s, and with freight movement projected to quadruple by 2050, the government "has acted decisively to deliver the infrastructure required to ensure Victoria remains the freight and logistics capital of Australia."
The Port of Hastings Container Expansion Project is expected to take about three years to progress through feasibility before entering procurement and delivery.