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PHOTO: The Québec Port Authority outlined a major infrastructure improvement to its cruise facilities. (Courtesy of Québec Port Authority)
The Québec Port Authority has outlined an $89.5 million improvement to its cruise facilities to meet fast-growing demand.
The major project includes redesigning the Ross Gaudreault Cruise Terminal and installing a mobile terminal.
The number of visitors to Québec has increased from 55,000 in 2000 to 180,000 in 2014, straining the current cruise ship facilities, which are operating at full capacity now. The expansion plans follow an international cruise forum held in February 2014, when the Québec community set the goal of 400,000 cruise passengers by 2025.
"The completion of this project is a crucial step in supporting the strong growth in international cruises that will take place in Québec over the next 10 years," said port authority CEO Mario Girard. "It is a promising economic and tourism project both for our community and for the province of Québec at large, since it will strengthen the St. Lawrence's unique position for international cruises."
The project will expand and redesign the Ross Gaudreault Cruise Terminal as well as install a mobile terminal at Wharf 30 in the Estuary sector. The projects will double the capacity of the terminals so they can accommodate 400,000 passengers by 2025.
It also will improve the logistical needs for embarkation and disembarkation operations for big ships and add a second terminal that meets international standards.
The news comes just weeks after the Québec government budgeted $55 million to improve cruise passenger greeting facilities at the ports of Québec and Montréal.
Theresa Norton, editor in chief of AGENTatHOME Magazine, covers the cruise industry for TravelPulse.com.
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