Engineering and project management consultancy, Royal HaskoningDHV, has delivered its master plan for the new Venice container terminal which should deliver major efficiency and reduce equipment costs saving the port millions of euros.
The key to the new offshore port design lies in an innovative logistics concept comprising of cranes barges and semi-submersible vessels which act as a conveyor belt eliminating ‘dead time’ for container transfers. It also allows for more flexibility during peak times.
In this case, developing a new container terminal at the Port of Venice itself was not an option due to regulatory and environmental constraints on the development of navigation channels in the Venice Lagoon. So the offshore port design is a particularly novel concept.
Of particular interest in the new masterplan are the semi-submersible vessels known as ‘Mama vessels’ designed by BMT Titron. They have the capacity to transport two ‘cassettes’ of up to 384 teu from the offshore terminal to shore and vice versa or by the use of two river barges which serve the Po River up to Mantova.
These mama vessels can withstand heavy seas and have a specially designed low wash hull form minimising wave impact to sensitive habitats and species in the Venice Lagoon. What’s more, the vessels’ engines are powered by natural gas, which will enable the port to reduce CO2 emissions even further, helping to make the port one of the most environmentally friendly in Northern Europe.
Looking forward, Venice’s new terminal will be able to handle 1m teu which is a significant portion of container volume estimated for the Northern Adriatic Sea by 2030. It should also help to foster the integration of Northern Adriatic ports into the core European road and rail corridors.