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Smaller options for Kwinana box terminal get nod

<p>Two options for Fremantle Ports’s new outer harbour container facilities at Kwinana, smaller than earlier proposals, had been approved to proceed for planning and environmental approval, the Western Australian Government revealed yesterday (Wednesday, July 4).</p> <p>Planning and infrastructure minister Alannah MacTiernan said additional berths would be needed to handle the overflow container trade when Fremantle’s Inner Harbour reached optimal capacity.</p> <p>&#8220We are a trading state and without adequate port capacity, our economy will not be sustainable,&#8221 Ms MacTiernan said. </p> <p>The options were:</p> <p>&#8226 An island about 1 km offshore linked by an open spanned bridge to an extension of Rowley Road, north of the Alcoa refinery and </p> <p>&#8226 A partially land-backed facility just south of Alcoa that would include reclamation of the foreshore and an island component with a freight link via Anketell Road.</p> <p>Both options were smaller than those previously proposed, with a final annual capacity of 1.4m containers, compared with 2.1m, and each was estimated to cost $1.3bn, including new road and rail links.</p> <p>"This is a project of immense economic importance to WA, ensuring that our trade needs continue to be met," Ms MacTiernan said.</p> <p>"It will also involve hundreds of jobs and increase local employment, both in the construction phases and when operational.</p> <p>"Fremantle Ports’s container trade has grown almost 10% annually on average since the early 1990s and the average size of container ships has increased by about 65% over the past decade."</p> <p>The new facilities needed to be on the metropolitan coast because 90% of the state’s container trade travelled within 50 km of Fremantle</p> <p>&#8220We anticipate that the statutory approvals phase will take about two years, after which one of the options will be chosen,&#8221 Ms MacTiernan said.</p> <p>The State Government was committed to Fremantle Inner Harbour’s continued operation as a working port.</p> <p>&#8220Both the Inner Harbour operations and the new container port facilities at Kwinana will be needed by 2015 when Fremantle is expected to reach its optimal capacity,&#8221 Ms MacTiernan said.</p> <p>&#8220It is likely that, as with the Inner Harbour in Fremantle, the new container port facility will be a mix of public and private investment.&#8221</p> <p>The Fremantle Ports Outer Harbour Project is jointly managed by Fremantle Ports and the state Department for Planning and Infrastructure.</p> <br />