The City of Baltimore and West8 agree to launch the initial planning phase for the Middle Branch waterfront project despite the Covid-19 pandemic
A century and a half later, a look back at the transformation of the port of Seville
➜ CaminosAndalucia – pp. 58-64
Oslo: a guide to integrating the Port with the City more effectively
At the turn of the 20th century, a wealth of possibilities opened up for urban development both in and around the port of Oslo. A global plan was put together, to ensure the various facilities concerned were aesthetically coherent, whether in terms of signage, roads, the colour of cranes or silos, etc. The plan, created under the aegis of the city of Oslo, brought together the main stakeholders, including the Port itself, local businesses, and others. The aesthetic guidelines ensured a consistent appearance for the port promenade, which now runs along a 9 kilometre stretch of waterfront, while also helping to better integrate the active port.
Port of Venice collaborates with the city to facilitate a better access in the historical city center.
Post-Covid-19: asking the right questions
Sharing and exchanging practical experience: this platform created by the Metropolis network brings together a number of initiatives of this kind, adopted by various international networks and organisations, including those we brought to your attention in our previous newsletters. Meanwhile, the UIA – International Union of Architects has launched an information hub that not only highlights the impact of the pandemic and measures to mitigate them, but also looks at the its implications for future city planning. The approach is similar to the online forum “Et demain on fait quoi?” (“What will we do in the future?”), which is being expanded and now includes around sixty contributions from planners, architects, sociologists, and others. The current crisis is focusing minds on issues that were already present, but it could provide an opportunity to renew them or explore new avenues, whether in terms of the economy and the balance between North and South, as highlighted by the IIED – International Institute for Environment and Development- , in terms of inequalities, or of course the choices possible for moving towards a fairer, more sustainable world, as hoped by Gaetan Siew (UN Habitat Special Envoy), Zaheer Allam and Carlos Moreno…
Roboat Project: autonomous boats on Amsterdam’s canals to ship goods, carry passengers, collect waste, etc.
Covid-19: towards a more human city?
The World Economic Forum has its own platform providing information about the Covid-19 pandemic, but as reported in our previous newsletter, increasingly thoughts are turning to the post-Covid world and the future of our cities. For example, some are calling for city streets to be redesigned to create more space for cyclists and pedestrians. There were projects of this kind in place before the pandemic struck, and they could now be fast-tracked, as in Paris or San Diego. Others want to see a rethink of our offices and working environments. But looking ahead to the world after Covid also means assessing the different approaches that would enable our cities to generate new jobs, while refocusing on the issues posed by climate change. This is the target set by the task force of 11 mayors from the international network C40 Cities. The mayors represent 11 cities, almost of all which are major port cities! Finally, although there are fears surrounding the possible use of personal information to prevent a second pandemic wave. But new technologies and artificial intelligence also offer some exciting prospects. This leads into the debate about the challenges of the smart city, as raised by Gaetan Siew (UN Habitat special envoy) and Zaheer Allam, two experts whom you will have heard at our world conferences. For them, the current situation is an opportunity to redefine what we see as a better, smarter city, one built on more complex networks that are not just technology-based but human-centric.
The Brittany Region (France) invites projects designed to identify and study the heritage of Breton ports. Residents of the region are being asked to help compile the inventory.
New Port Center in Dunkirk
Last Saturday, 4th of July, the Port Center of Dunkirk (France) opened its doors to public for the 1st time. The process started 2 years ago, with the support of the main partners, the Urban Community of Dunkirk, the Port Authority, ACMAPOR association (Association for the creation of a home for port life and traditions) and the Port Museum. The new Port Center is located in the Port Museum and its exhibition is based on 7 topics: the identity the port, ships, goods, men, territory, prospects and opening to the world. The new space with 240 sqm. will be main point for the port-city-citizen relationship.
Port of Dakar (Senegal) extends its support to local hospitals, donating 10 mechanical ventilators.
Beauport Bay in Quebec (Canada) will be the object of significant investment to mitigate the effects of the Laurentia project. The interventions have been agreed in a collaborative effort with local organizations
➜ Port of Quebec
Protecting Biodiversity in Port Cities: Working with nature in Sevilla
The port of Sevilla (Spain) presents an innovative project combining the management of dredging sediments and the creation of new habitats for threatened aquatic birds. This project follows the new work philosophy of “working with nature” and is a collaboration with the Spanish National Research Council (CSIC). More ports around world are making new efforts for biodiversity. The port of Singapore has commissioned a coral relocation and conservation program, and in Imbituba (Brazil), the port launched the 12º edition of the whale monitoring program as part of their environmental plan.
Port Cities and Universities working together
Human Capital development is goal 5 of the AIVP Agenda 2030, and a priority for many members. The port of Venice will allocate €600k for the Ca’ Foscari University to create a study center focused on maritime and logistic activities. Part of the funding will also be dedicated to the new “Venice Science Gallery”. In Bahía Blanca, Argentina, the port has signed new agreements with the National Technological University (Bahía Blanca Regional Faculty), with whom we have already been working together, to develop new educational programs. In Algeciras, Spain, the city, the port and the university are working together for the creation of the European Sea University, in the Lago Marítimo project.
The Port of Auckland (New Zealand) create a vertical garden
The aim is to integrate its car-handling terminal building more effectively into the urban surroundings. It will form a local landmark for the City Port and its roof will be turned into a public park within a few years. It will also promote biodiversity. The garden meets sustainability criteria, and everything in it can be either re-used or recycled.
New EU project to reduce the air and acoustic pollution in cities. The port of Valencia will host one of the pilot projects.
Archive of the port of Lisbon joins the celebration of the City of Archives of Barreiro, with special visits and exhibitions.
Is hydrogen the best solution for the energy transition in Port Cities?
Reducing the emissions and the environmental footprint is one of the main challenges for port cities. Even though in some cases, urban traffic might be the main pollution source, as the Port of Valencia (Spain) shows in a recent study, ports still play a crucial role. Although there is no silver bullet, a combination of existing solutions and new fuels like hydrogen is showing promising results. For example, in Lisbon (Portugal), the city announced a pilot project of a green hydrogen production station for vehicles, while the port will electrify its quays starting in 2022, reducing cruises pollution. In Valencia, the port will have a hydrogen refuelling station already in 2021, framed in the H2PORTS EU project. Other key green energy projects in Spain are going to take place in the port of Bilbao, where industry leader Repsol will invest €80 million. One project will be one of the largest net zero emissions synthetic fuel production plants, based on green hydrogen, while the other will be gas production plant from urban waste. The importance of hydrogen is visible in the national strategies of some countries, like Germany.
Efforts of AIVP members recognized in the WPSP awards
The winners of the 6 awards of the World Port Sustainability Program (WPSP) were announced on June 24th. This program, of which AIVP is one of the founding partners, recognizes the efforts of ports around the globe to contribute to the sustainable development agenda. In this edition, organized in 6 categories, AIVP members earned well deserved recognitions. The ports of Valencia and Venice are part of the winning entry for resilient infrastructure, the collaborative project “Green and Connected (Green C) Ports”. The ports of Rotterdam, Amsterdam and North Sea Port earned via the Dutch Seaports organization the award for governance and ethics. Other members also were among the finalists in several categories, such as the ports of Marseille, Rotterdam (in a second category), Helsinki or Montreal.
Public investment and financial aid in port cities
After the first wave of cultural and social initiatives, port cities around the globe are presenting their plans for the post-covid recovery. The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore has communicated a package of $27 million of financial support for companies, as well as for professionals training and employment support. In the USA, the ports of LA and Seattle have presented renewed infrastructural investments plan. In the case of LA, the port will invest $367million to reduce the impact on the local economy and employment, while in Seattle the plan includes $1.5billion in 20 projects, including also airport facilities. At the same time, in Spain, the ports of Valencia and Bilbao have followed a similar path. While in Valencia the port presented a financial aid package of €57,2 million to support local port companies, the port of Bilbao announced that their investment plan for 2020 will reach €67 million, to support the economy and employment creation.
The sustainable port is both smart and collective
The CEOs of the ports of Antwerp and Rotterdam have laid out converging visions for the future development of their respective ports, one having just returned from the World Economic Forum, the other speaking about in an interview about forward-looking prospect for the port. Both agree that the fight against climate change and the need for a carbon-neutral port economy are absolutely crucial. Technological innovation, both onshore and offshore, and moves to optimise logistics chains, will of course form part of the solution. Beyond that, however, the success of these changes will depend on the ability of ports to forge new partnerships and work collectively, by bringing their communities together around a shared process of transformation.
➜ Port of Rotterdam / Flows
To ease congestion on the roads, the Port of Melbourne (Australia) has confirmed plans to develop its rail infrastructure (with a €16 million investment)
Kribi (Cameroon): first 31 businesses now setting up in the port zone, with another 150 set to follow.
Vlissingen – North Sea Port (Netherlands): first developments for the Borsele 1+2 offshore wind farm that will eventually provide power to a million homes
Major trends and scenarios for the evolution of logistics
In the majority of port cities, logistics activity is increasingly structuring the territory. Marking out the future of this sector is becoming necessary. To this effect, the Urban Planning Agency of Marseille (France) remind us of a few key points. The massification of world trade flows will continue leading to the concentration of shipowners, the adaptation of ports, the extension and robotisation of warehouses, the emergence of single operators. In the era of e-commerce, the optimisation of the last mile has also become crucial. Nevertheless, land transport remains the weak link in this ecosystem with difficulties in massifying flows and proportionally a heavier CO2 impact. Pooling could be part of the answer but not all sectors believe in it. At the heart of these developments, the issue of employment appears to be an additional challenge for the territories.
Rwanda: Four ports on Lake Kivu earmarked as an alternative to road transport
Lake Kivu in western Rwanda marks the border with the neighbouring DRC. The four ports will be built with the help of the Netherlands, and spread out from the north to the south of the lake. They will promote improved mobility for passengers and goods between the various districts along the bank. Within twenty years, they should handle the majority of commercial cross-border trade and some 3 million passengers. The Government is also keen to use the ports as a platform for more ambitious plans to kick-start water-based transport on other lakes and rivers in Rwanda. The aim is to reduce the use of onshore transport infrastructures, maintenance of which represents a significant portion of the national budget. Finally, the project will help to boost competitiveness for both the food industry (beer, tea, coffee) and the cement industry, while also giving a lift to the tourist sector.