Built in partnership with MSC Cruises and Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings, Southampton will open a fifth cruise terminal for the 2021 season.
The is hoped that the new terminal will strengthen its position as the leading departure port in the UK.
The £55 million terminal will boast roof-mounted solar power and shore power connectivity, allowing ships with the right onboard technology to ‘plug in’ while they are docked.
NCL said its partnership with the port ‘demonstrates its commitment to the region’ while MSC Cruises said it was evidence that it believed in the long-term future of the UK cruise market.
Alastair Welch, Director of Associated British Ports Southampton, said: “We’re very pleased to announce this major advance in our cruise infrastructure at the port, delivering further access to Southampton for the industry, whilst supporting our commitment to accelerate improvements in local air quality.
“This investment is a huge vote of confidence in the future of cruise in Southampton and we’re excited to be at the forefront of a growing industry.”
Steve Moeller, Senior Vice President of Commercial Development at Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings Ltd, said: “This agreement marks the continuation of the strong partnership between Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings and the Port of Southampton and demonstrates our commitment to the region.
“Consistent with our commitment to driving a positive impact on society and the environment, we are pleased to further promote environmental conservancy by partnering with Associated British Ports for the new terminal that will feature Shore Power and Roof-Mounted Solar Power.”
Gianni Onorato, MSC Cruises’ CEO said: “At MSC Cruises we really believe in the potential of the UK cruise market and making this long-term commitment is evidence of that.
“Over the last five years MSC Cruises has increased our presence in the UK & Irish markets and following a positive response from travel agents and our guests we feel now is the right time to make a more substantial commitment.
“We are in a unique position that not only will we be committing to having an MSC Cruises’ ship home port from Southampton every year, but several of our ships will be visiting Southampton as a destination as part of our wider cruise programme.”