243% growth and 51,600 new jobs in ten years: the redeveloped Docklands have become a major source of employment for the city of Melbourne (Australia)
The Uruguayan Minister of Tourism has announced plans for a cruise terminal in Montevideo, on the site currently occupied by his own Ministry building
A former warehouse in Shanghai has been converted by Stefano Boeri into fashion offices, while retaining its original cultural identity
Solutions for turning disuses grain silos into attractive hub
Built between 1906 and 1925, the vast riverside complex of grain silos in Buffalo City (USA) comprises a dozen buildings. Having come to symbolise economic crises and failures for the previous generation, the iconic structures that cement the city and landscape have been targeted by a new generation of artists in search of inspiration. The silos will be turned into apartments, and facilities for the arts community as well: housing, studios, gallery, etc. The silos are a distinctive symbol of Buffalo’s port identity, and the architects will preserve their exterior appearance whilst redeveloping the interiors. The project is part of a wider programme dubbed “Silo City”, one of whose main aims is to make Buffalo a creative city.
The port of Huelva enhances its port heritage for citizens
The Spanish port of Huelva’s plan for the “Muelle de Levante”, which aims to reconnect the port witgh the city, will be debated at the next municipal council meeting. In an area where port activity is on the decline, along a 1 kilometre stretch of the river, is close to the old town. It could host public spaces and recreational areas, as well as a marina and cruise terminal. The fences separating the various port activities will be removed, and the new buildings will need to be integrated with the quay’s historic and industrial features (cranes, warehouses) in a seamless and aesthetically pleasing way. The public will once again be able to access the water and enjoy views of the port.
The revival of the former Tour & Taxis passenger terminal in Brussels (Belgium) is beginning to take shape, with its heritage aspects set to be showcased.
A decade on from the redevelopment of the former port of Rio (Brazil), “Porto Maravilha” has failed to keep its promises for social housing
The Mayor of Hamburg unveils plans for a new district in Hafen City
“Grasbrook” will provide homes for 6,000 residents and create over 16,000 jobs. Located in the port activity zone, the new district has been intentionally designed as a mixed-use zone, with housing, schools, offices and retail spaces. The 46 hectare site will be split into three sectors. One of them, the Hafentorquartier, will act as a transition zone for the port activities present and will accommodate research and development activities and start-ups. The new housing will be required to meet the environmental standards already applied in the East zone of HafenCity, such as the use of solar energy and e-mobility solutions. Attractive green and public spaces will also be created along the waterfront.
New grant for Indian women seafarers. The national government has created the Maritime Training Trust that will provide scholarships to encourage women to pursue careers in the shipping industry.
Water taxis in Rotterdam (The Netherlands) will be hydrogen powered. The first emission free boat will navigate the Maas river in 2021.
New agreement between German University and port of Trieste (Italy) to create a port and logistic center of expertise focused on energy.
Port, city and university of Durrës (Albania) sign an agreement to foster local entrepreneurship. The POWER (Ports as Driving Wheels of Entrepreneurial Realm) MoU will focus on key areas such as energy efficiency, business enhancement, fuel replacement and renewable energy
Port of Barcelona speeds up the electrification of the quays to save CO2 emissions from ships. In 7 years, docked ships should be able to green energy.
➜ El Vigía
Hydrogen in port cities: new project could save up to 1 million tons of CO2 per year
The quest for new energy sources to replace fossil fuels is accelerating. Although many ports have already created the first systems for LNG (Liquefied Natural Gas) for ships, many argue that hydrogen could be the ultimate solutions for the energy transition. The most recent project joining this chase has been announced in the port of Oostende (Belgium). A consortium formed by the port authority, DEME Concessions and PMV plans to build a new plant to produce green hydrogen using renewable energy. The plant would save between 500k and 1 million tons of CO2 per year. The project also includes an offshore wind farm including 399 turbines with a total capacity of 2,26 GW. Other port cities in Europe are also developing different initiatives in the same direction. The port of Antwerp, also in Belgium, already ordered tug boats and passengers ferry using hydrogen technology. Hamburg (Germany), announced last year its plans to build the world’s largest hydrogen electrolysis plant in port, with a capacity of 100 megawatts. The port of Valencia (Spain), is also active in this field, with the project H2PORT, including port equipment powered by hydrogen. However, we cannot forget there is no silver bullet for the energy transition. This ambitious goal will require diversifying our energy sources and optimizing our consumption.
Five community groups will benefit from environmental grants from the port of Seattle
Local schools supported by the port of Kribi (Cameroon)
Innovative mobility in Málaga (Spain). Driverless buses will connect the cruise terminal with the city center circulating inside the port. The municipality will invest 180 000 € on a new traffic light system for the future autonomous vehicles.
Ports implement Smart lighting to become more sustainable
Many ports worldwide are changing their illumination solutions for new technology that is more energy efficient. The port of Helsinki (Finalnd) deployed during 2019 their new system that is easier and more flexible to use. This system facilitates a smarter management, saving euros and CO2. Now the port terminal lighting is automated and can adapt better to the different usage of the space. In the Port of Bilbao (Spain), the new lighting system saves up to 50% of the energy from the previous one. The new LED technology and smart management system is more flexible and has also improved the comfort of the workers. The port of Gijón, also in Spain will receive new financing to improve the lighting, following the same scheme. In the case of Lisbon (Portugal), on the main terminal recently changed as well to LED lighting system, saving up to 13 426 kg CO2 per year. We can find examples worldwide such as the case of Vancouver (Canada), where new industrial facilities in the port also implementing new systems using LED and movement sensors. Or the case of San Antonio in Chile, where the new headquarters of the port will save up to 44% of its energy demands for lighting. These initiatives may not be as revolutionary as other complex projects introducing new fuels or energy sources, but they are gradually implementing energy savings and reducing the carbon footprint of the ports.
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.
Whether fixed or floating, offshore wind power is now becoming truly industrialised. Cooperation between ports will need to be strengthened as a result.
Port of Montreal (Canada): fluid activities vital for combining economic efficiency and respect for the local population
The transport and logistics industry faced with the environmental and energy challenge
The sector currently accounts for 25% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions. Energy efficiency is one of the biggest ways to cut emissions. While there is a consensus on the need to gradually phase out fossil fuels, LNG is seen as a stepping stone, while in the longer term, making the right choice between hydrogen, ammonia and biofuels remains a key challenge. Another way to reduce emissions is intermodality, with the aim of reducing the proportion of goods moved by road, and increasing short distance transport by rail, river and sea. Finally, innovating for more efficient logistics is the third solution. The aim is to reduce overall energy use, while ensuring that emissions avoided at sea are not simply moved onshore, particularly as a result of increased congestion in port cities.