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19 June 2013

Integrating the Port and the City of Rijeka onto the international scene: the Rijeka Gateway Project

In the 1990s the necessity to stop the steady decrease of Port of Rijeka traffic volume imposed a new strategy and development plans to re-boost and ensure the competitiveness of the Port of Rijeka.
The Rijeka Gateway Project is now entering in a decisive implementing phase. The Port and the City of Rijeka are both AIVP members since many years. M. Vojko Obersnel, Mayor of Rijeka City, discussed with us the main stakes and challenges of this project and how it will enhance the attractiveness of the Port and the City, giving to the Port City of Rijeka a new role on the international scene.

Based on a study prepared by the consultants of Rotterdam Maritime Group, the new Master plan and Port Modernisation Project – The Rijeka Gateway Project – got the support of The World Bank through a series of loans which were granted between 2003 and 2009. The partial relocation of port activities out of the city centre makes room for new urban developments on the waterfront and, in parallel for a new quality of life for the whole city.
The Rijeka Gateway Project is now entering in a decisive implementing phase. The Port and the City of Rijeka are both AIVP members since many years. M. Vojko Obersnel, Mayor of Rijeka City, discussed with us the main stakes and challenges of this project and how it will enhance the attractiveness of the Port and the City, giving to the Port City of Rijeka a new role on the international scene.

AiVP: The Rijeka Gateway Project has two main port components: on the Western part of the port with the new development of the port facilities at Zagreb Pier, and on the East with the redevelopment and expansion of the Brajdica Container Terminal. A design and construction contract has been signed in April 2012 with Italian companies for the first phase of the Zagreb Pier Container Terminal. ICTSI, which became a majority shareholder in the concessionaire of the Brajdica Container Terminal in early 2011, has begun its upgrading.
M. Obersnel, as many other port cities around the world, the Port of Rijeka is now engaged in a redevelopment on itself. This one combines a rationalisation of the existing port areas and uses, with their partial expansions. Could you summarize which are the main aims of these two projects, the current state of their implementation and their schedules?

M. Obersnel, Mayor of Rijeka City:

Rijeka within the Pan-European Transport Corridors

Briefly, the Rijeka Gateway Project will revive and promote the importance and the effectiveness of the Rijeka Transportation Route within the European Union and hinterland outside of the EU. At the same time, this is a transportation route of great national importance. Between Rijeka and the Croatian-Hungarian border, it fosters life and economical activities and involves somehow more than 2.5 Million people located in the most developed Croatian counties and cities. Honestly, we are fully aware that, excluding highways, the other two components of this transportation route, the port and the railways need to be modernized, radically and fast if we want to keep pace with other traffic axes. So, the Brajdica Terminal, which is completed and by beginning of July this year it should be in full function, gives us a chance to enhance the container turnover yearly up to 600,000 TEU.  After the 1st phase of construction by 2017, the Zagreb Pier Terminal will help to raise the yearly turnover of containers through port of Rijeka to more than 1 Million TEU.

The construction of the second phase of the Zagreb Pier Terminal can additionally enlarge total port capacity up to 1.2 Million TEU; however this phase will depend on future concessionaire. Apart from the containers, our port will mark a remarkable turnover of liquid cargo (5-8 Million tons yearly), general and bulk cargo (4-5 Million tons yearly). Summarizing all these facts, I would say that the final aims refer not just to reviving the transporting role, but also to provoking the transformation impact on the Croatian economy, by attracting new investments and developing new technologies.

On the 20th May 2013 a large ship from China reached the Adriatic Gate Container Terminal – AGCT, an ICTSI Group Company, managing and operating the Brajdica Container Terminal in Rijeka. The ship brought new equipment: 10 new cranes (2 Post Panamax size quayside gantry cranes, 6 Rubber Tired Gantries (RTG – cranes for the storage area) and 2 Rail Mounted Gantries (RMG – cranes for the rail area). The new equipment is expected to be in full function by the beginning of July 2013.


And, the newly constructed BIP (Border Inspection Point) station, as a prerequisite for Croatia to join the EU as from July 1st onwards; all cargo of animal or vegetable origin which is imported into the European Union has to be inspected within the port(s). The presence of BIP station at AGCT will enable Rijeka to be the first Port of Call on the North Adriatic.

AiVP : The current port activities, and the planned ones, are quite close to the City. Which negative impacts of the previous port activities will be minored or even cancelled thanks to the new port developments? And which integration measures are planned to reduce the possible remaining negative impacts?

M. Obersnel: The urban renewal of the Delta AreaThe most important improvement will happen within the city centre. After removing certain port facilities, the urban renewal of the Delta area and the Baross Port will be enabled. However, the activities of the container terminals will eventually bring some negative impact related to noise and  light, which have already caused complains from citizens who live in the vicinity of the Brajdica Container Terminal, as it is located pretty close to the residential areas.

We have resolved some of the bad impacts, such as the lighting. The monitoring system will soon be activated, so we intend to have the full control over the situation and the possibility to influence the work process in order to avoid conflict situations.

AiVP :  One of the objectives of the Rijeka Gateway Project is to re-open the city to the sea. Cities and Ports around the world are often confronted with the problem of physical barriers (highways, railways, etc…) between the city and the sea. In Rijeka, a marshalling yard and railways used for the port activities constitute such a barrier. But railway is also a more sustainable transport mode for port activities.
Which solutions are considered to solve such a dilemma and to combine opening the city to the sea while preserving sustainable transports for a port traffic that is planned to increase?

Implementing of modern criteria in the reconstruction of the railway and port inffrastructure

M. Obersnel: The best and the final solution for the railway connections in Rijeka will be the new railway bypass. Unfortunately, the present economic situation forces us to look for other, easier and cheaper solutions. One of such solutions is giving up the shore railway (we plan to use it for the city railway), and the other solution refers to the reconstruction of existing railway crossing the city area. By implementing the modern criteria in the reconstruction of the railway, conflicts with the urban area should be avoided. This means that the conflict crossings of the railway with the roads and pedestrian corridors will be resolved as well as the problems of noise, vibrations etc.
The railway should be used also for public transportation. The parts of railway that are visible in the urban area and citizens’ access spots (as it will become a city railway) should be arranged as attractive as possible. We think that such measures can break the idea of the railway as a barrier.

AiVP : On the Western port, some warehouses will be demolished and other ones rehabilitated for new port functions. But the existing huge grain silos are also a visual and physical barrier between the City and the Sea. It was envisaged to have them demolished and rebuilt 15 kms away in a new port zone. Is that still planned? Does their reconversion to urban functions has also been considered initially?

M. Obersnel : To demolish the grain silos or to rehabilitate them – the question is still open. The solution will resolve from the development policy of the Rijeka port systems. We have to be open and admit that these questions are not our priority. The core of our interest lies in the fastest possible modernization of the railway and the construction of new specialized container terminals. However, when tackling the interventions with gradual effects, we cannot refrain from giving services to handle other types of cargo.

AiVP : Between the Eastern and the Western part of the Port and the City, the Delta / Porto Baros areas is the third component of the Rijeka Gateway Project. These areas were used for port activities (mainly for the handling and storage of timber) until the middle of 2012. Their relocation to other parts of the port makes room for a new Port/City interface. 17 ha are concerned of which 13.7 ha for urban development, 1.8 ha for a marina and 2.2 ha for public infrastructures and parks.
The project includes the construction of a new passenger terminal within the existing passenger pier. It will enhance the attractiveness of Rijeka as a passenger port. Which are the expected growth in the passenger traffic and the possible economic impact on the City?

Maritime Passenger Terminal

M. Obersnel : The first phase of the maritime passenger terminal has already been constructed at the breakwater foot. Unfortunately, the seasonal character of travelling, the shortage of connection lines between Rijeka and the islands in catchment area as well as other cities along the Croatian coast, has been affecting us by a decreasing trend of passengers during last four years.  So, our important task is to make our Port more attractive to cruise operators, and also to keep on requesting from the Ministry of the Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure of the Republic of Croatia to significantly enhance the local sea traffic.

AiVP : Which kind of passenger terminal is planned? A “mono-functional one” solely dedicated to port functions or is there a possibility to implement a facility mixing port and urban functions (shops, restaurants, views, public spaces, etc…) as we can observe now more and more in other port cities?

M. Obersnel : We have in mind a passenger terminal that involves both, the content of a passenger terminal and the contents dedicated to citizens and visitors. Moreover, the Terminal is situated next to the Baross Port and its contents should be interesting also to the nautical tourist. Generally speaking, the urban redevelopment project will show additional directions for the development of contents on the Passenger Terminal and in its vicinity.

Delta Area

AiVP : The possible guidelines and requirements for the development of the Delta & Porto Baros areas have been prepared by Cowi Consultants and Gehl Architects from Copenhagen, Denmark. They suggested a division in three districts: a park district on the Northern part, the closest to the city centre; a maritime district on the South directly opened to the sea and connected to the marina planned on the Baros zone; and, in-between, an urban district. A large part is reserved for free spaces as the total building volume is limited to 40% of the whole area (1.2 million m³).
Could you summarize which are the main components of the planned built facilities and how they will complement the existing ones of the city centre?

M. Obersnel : I have to partly correct the initial context of your question. In their study, Cowi Consultants and Gehl Architects just followed a land use of Delta area and Baross Port envisaged by the Physical Plan of the City of Rijeka, approved in 2003. The mentioned Plan divides the Delta area into two main portions: the northern, envisaged to be arranged as a City park, encompassing 4 ha of land between the river and the canal, and the southern portion of 12 ha approx., located also between the river and the canal, but open to the sea and directly connected with Baross Port, with stunning views on the Rijeka bay, the islands, the mountains and the rest of the city. This portion of the Delta area is recognized as a mixed use area with a combination of residential and business area, retail, services, public, hotel and facilities of all kinds.
The interface with the marina and its facilities should bring a new identity and add something unique that does not already exist in the city. The structure within the Delta Area should be of a new character and not a copy of existing city structures. But, due to worthy and recognizable existing city centre, the Delta area should in the same time be developed as an extension of the city centre. Precisely, the old part of the City centre and the new one has to pervade each other and function as a whole. The public interest would be represented by a new multifunctional hall, an aquarium and a variety of public areas (squares, streets, promenades, sidewalks, etc).

AiVP : Two landmark buildings could be constructed according to Gehl Architects: one in the “urban district” and the other one in the “Maritime District”. Which kind of equipment could be used and for which functions?

M. Obersnel : Usually, the landmarks are iconic buildings in terms of height, design, position, typology and/or similar properties. We have not already précised which buildings and how many of them have to be designed and developed in such a way, which also emerged from our concept of urban planning and architectural design. Namely, the first step will be the launching of public competition for urban design of the Delta area and Baross Port at the beginning of June and will last till the beginning of October 2013. This competition will be of international character, but under one condition: the architects and urban planners from outside of Croatia can participate if they would engage at least one Croatian architect.  Further developers are expected to be selected through international bidding procedure next year, and they will be obliged to develop the site in accordance with the best of entries from the previous competition. So, in direct negotiation between the City, the developer and the public opinion, we also expect to define the landmarks.

Urban Design of the Delta Area and Baross Port

AiVP : Gehl Architects has also suggested a phasing strategy aimed at developing first the facilities which could attract people and visitors on the redeveloped areas with the double objective of generating revenues and attracting private investors and partners for the following stages. Such a strategy could be considered in other port cities projects and will be of great interest to the members of AIVP. Could you explain it further?M. Obersnel : The (re)development in phases is acceptable due to many reasons. We are fully aware that at this moment the Baross Port could be converted into a marina very quickly and without big expenditures. But the final proposal of phases will reflect a real relationship between the specific investors’ expectations and the real estate market respond.

AiVP : To conclude, such projects are of course a long way process, sometimes generating some impatience from the citizens and partners. Even that is still an on-going project, which are the main lessons you can emphasize till now and which are your main expectations in the close future?

M. Obersnel : The citizens are impatient, indeed, and so are the experts, which are not to be forgotten, because the Delta urbanization project is recognized as a project of the century and as an opportunity to create new jobs and to realize the best achievements in urbanism, architecture, public space arrangement. The future investors and developers should also be aware of this. Many examples in the world confirm my words and show that similar principles had to be obeyed.
The Delta Area should inspire the city with new life and good vibrations. The new attractions in the area should add value to the existing city life in Rijeka and support the already progressing development of other city functions (university, port, green industries, etc.) in order to constitute the city as to become more attractive for new citizens who will choose Rijeka as a temporary or permanent place to live.
The city of Rijeka has a desire for an identity related to water, events, health, sport, culture, nature and food. Rijeka has a strong potential for practicing a natural way of living with beaches, mountains and walking tracks. In relation to other towns and cities in the region, Rijeka can offer unique cultural activities. In developing the Delta Area, these identities could be reached and even expanded.

The Delta area will soon receive a new identity


The Port Authority of Rijeka and Rijeka City

are members of AIVP

Download – Rijeka Case Study

18 June 2013

Oslo, waterfront: Green light for the Munch Museum

The green light has finally been given to plans to move the Munch Museum four years after the selection of the project proposed by Herreros Arquitectos and following protracted discussions over both the merits of moving the museum and over the cost of the operation. The new museum on the waterfront plans to open its doors in 2018.
Source : The Art newspaper

18 June 2013

Puerto Pampa, Buenos Aires: Old cold-storage warehouse in the “Arts district” to house a new real estate project

Source : Clarin

10 June 2013

Cherbourg: heat pump installed in the port’s commercial basin supplies 1,300 homes

Source : Le Monde

6 June 2013

Strasbourg: the old port warehouse will be built up three storeys higher!

Work is in progress on the Seegmuller warehouse. The addition of a rectangular space on three levels proposed by architects Georges Heintz and Anne-Sophie Kehr will allow the development of part of the planned residential construction. A less space-greedy solution for the programme on the “Malraux Peninsula”.
Source : Bâti Actu (+ images)

 

6 June 2013

Stockholm: a pilot city for green growth

With more than forty years’ commitment to environmental issues, Stockholm is aiming at Zero fossil fuel consumption by 2050. Today it is a model for the “Green Economy”, particularly through achievements in two port-city sectors: the Hammerby eco-district and the Royal Seaport. Detailed report
Source : City of Stockholm

 

6 June 2013

Calais (France) incorporates water transport into its public transport network

Source : Le Marin

Citizen Port

14 November 2018

Energy transition, community relations, human capital: three development priorities for the port of Antwerp.

For its Chief Executive, the port of Antwerp needs increasingly to become a business facilitator and a community builder. The port must take up the challenges of the future by fostering dialogue and acting with the community. Creating a working environment that promotes initiative-taking and respects the well-being of employees will also contribute, as will improving everyday mobility for commuters in the port zone.

Full article: ESPO

14 November 2018

The port of Vancouver is rewarded again for the consistency of its management practices with its sustainable development policy.

Full article: Port of Vancouver

14 November 2018

The Port de Southampton is speeding up the construction of cycle paths to improve links between home and work, thus reducing pollution.

Full article: Daily Echo

12 November 2018

Reducing emissions from maritime transport by 20% by 2050 raises economic and technological questions. Isemar tries to bring some elements of response.

Full article: Isemar

12 November 2018

Social network are increasingly at the core of the marketing strategies of cruise operators.

Full article: Port Economics

12 November 2018

The Port of Kiel acquires a power plant for cruise ships in order to cover the demand of 50% of calls by 2020.

Full article: World Cargo News

7 November 2018

Genoa: 5th meeting of the AIVP Port Center Network (PCN) Working Group

A reduced PCN working group meeting brought together around thirty people from Europe and Canada. The meeting was officially hosted by Porto Antico, the Port Authority and the City of Genoa. Over a day and a half, a series of presentations were given by local stakeholders, with opportunity for debate and discussion, sharing of ideas, and field trips including a visit to the Port Center which recently re-opened to the public, plus the Città dei Bambini, the Galata museum, and a research laboratory specialising in pioneering biomaterials.

Full article: Port Center by AIVP

7 November 2018

Shore power for cruise ships continues to be a debatable issue due to the high investment costs and relatively low use.

Full article: CruiseIndustry

7 November 2018

The French Parliament strengthens the polluter-pays principle for ship wastes management.

Full article: ESPO

5 November 2018

The Aix-Marseille-Provence Metropolitan Area and the CCI of Var have been chosen to host the “Hydrogène dans les Territoires” Days 2019

Full article: Cap Energie

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Enterprise-driver Port

14 November 2018

Increasingly strong ties between the actors involved in river traffic and sea ports force the former to review their strategies.

They face several challenges: preserving investment in the face of the responsiveness of the route, despite the fall in the availability of financing; becoming more closely integrated with global logistical systems; improving connections with other modes of transport; and finally, becoming engaged in local projects aimed at strengthening river services in urban areas, while sharing use of river banks which have become highly prized spaces.

Full article : ITF

14 November 2018

DP Word is giving Virgin Hyperloop a close race for the execution of a project to connect the Indian cities of Mumbai and Pune.

Full article: Port Technology

14 November 2018

Amsterdam: during the 2nd year of the Roboat project, scale models of autonomous ships have been validated. Next stage: a 1:2 scale prototype.

Full article: Cities Today

14 November 2018

New navigable routes will allow North East India to be served over Bangladeshi ports

Full article: Business Standart

14 November 2018

The Italian Government announces that the future of cruise ship calls at Venice should be decided within a few months at the latest.

Full article: The Meditelegraphh

12 November 2018

OECD: the power of alliances could prompt a rethink of port policies, especially in Europe.

The issue of maritime alliances is the focus of the latest report by the ITF, which shows that the concentration of container ship owners is currently impacting on quality and service. There is real pressure on terminal and port operators, whose development is partly funded by the public sector. The ITF is calling for competition law to be applied in full to shipping, port projects to be assessed on common principles and standards, and finally a rethink of national and supra-regional port policies.

Full article: ITF OCDE

 

12 November 2018

Canadian port policy: should the number of ports be reduced from 18, and territories be given more say in appointing their directors?

Full article: The Conversation

12 November 2018

70% of European trucking companies are convinced that there will be driverless trucks in 10 years. The same is the case for last mile freight.

Full article: El Vigia 1 / El Vigia 2

12 November 2018

Singapore invests 18 million SGD in a Centre of Excellence in Modelling for Next Generation Ports to optimise long term operation

Full article : Hellenic Shipping News

12 November 2018

By creating the largest green hydrogen cluster in Europe, the Port of Amsterdam wants to move towards a climate-neutral circular industry.

Full article: Port of Amsterdam

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