New Portsmouth ferry hub opens

by Tiffany Millar on April 1, 2011

A new ferry terminal at Portsmouth International Port opened for business for the first time today. Passengers began using the 2,900 square-metre facility this morning after the official opening ceremony at midnight last night.

The ferry and cruise ship terminal, which cost a total of £16.5 million to build, replaces the one which has stood at the southern English port since the 1970s. The hub, which is owned by Portsmouth City Council, is expected to be used by over two million passengers every year.

The terminal’s new manager, Martin Puthan, said the facility will meet the needs of modern travellers with its up-to-date features. The building will only use around 20 percent of the energy of the original terminal’s chiller and biolder system, with temperatures controlled using thermal energy from seawater.

The new hub has also been described as more like an airport than a ferry port, with a dedicated VIP area, check-in desks, restaurants and shops. A total of 36 ships are booked to pull into the new port this year.

In a route that was abandoned by ferry operators P&O last year, Brittany Ferries is to reopen the service from Portsmouth to Bilbao. Cruise ship firm Swan Hellenic is also set to sail from the city later in the year.

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