On Wednesday 28th October the Cayman Cabinet officially approved the cruise berthing facility recommendations.
The Cayman Government announced in September that they were pushing ahead with the plans to build a cruise berthing facility in George Town, however a design has not been finalized.
The cruise pier project estimates a potential economic upside of US$439 million over 20 years for the Cayman Islands.
The estimate factors in anticipated increase in passenger spending based on the assumption that the piers would allow passengers to spend more time on shore.
The engineers are tweaking the project design to minimize the environmental impacts. The plans do look certain to involve dredging the George Town Harbour to build the $189 million cruise berthing facility.
“This has not been an easy decision for government,” said Deputy Premier and Tourism Minister Hon. Moses Kirkconnell. “We’re fully aware that our tourism product is supported by the natural beauty of our environment. Therefore it bears repeating that we remain committed to identifying the best possible option that will deliver the most economic benefit with the least environmental harm.”
The facility is expected to produce up to 500 jobs over the 3-year construction period.
The next phase of the project will involve discussion with cruise lines on a preferred financing model.by