Investments at the Port of Gdynia – earlier than planned
As a modern enterprise, the Port of Gdynia is keeping pace with the customer demands. Its authority is intensively investing in adapting the port infrastructure to handle the largest vessels calling at the Baltic Sea. This is being carried out in accordance with the Development Strategy of the Port of Gdynia that emphasises the need to ensure sustainable development of the service sector in the port.
The cargo handling in the Port of Gdynia is growing despite the global economic slowdown, decrease in port and sea routes activities during the coronavirus epidemic. The first months of 2021 proved to be very intensive for the Port of Gdynia terminals. Between January and March 2021, 239,454 TEU were handled, which compared to the result of the same period in 2020, i.e. 224,257 TEU, is an increase of 6.8 per cent in the containerised cargo area. The annual growth, as well as good forecasts for the coming years, are a strong argument for investments in infra and suprastructure of the Port of Gdynia in order to remain competitive.
The increase in seaport cargo handling is increasingly related to the potential of intermodal transport, which in the coming years will become a priority branch of cargo transportation both in Poland and in Europe. The growing volume of cargo handling makes it necessary to build logistic facilities. With this in mind, the Port of Gdynia Authority is constantly carrying out investment works aimed at the development of infrastructure in the Gdynia Port Logistics Centre.
One of the most important ongoing investment tasks is a comprehensive conceptual design of land development for the Western Port with an area of about 30 hectares, together with the construction of manoeuvring and storage yards on an area of about 20 hectares – an element of the Logistics Centre, including the construction of an intermodal terminal.
“Investments in this area of the Port of Gdynia are directly in line with the Port of Gdynia Strategy 2027. Our goal is to create favourable conditions for the development of the Trans-European Transport Network (TEN-T). Thanks to the investments we will be the right logistic partner for our contractors from Poland and abroad. Increased cargo handling capacity is an opportunity but also a challenge, therefore it is necessary to create favourable conditions for further development,” comments Jacek Sadaj, Vice President of the Board of the Port of Gdynia. “The cooperation with the contractor is very good and we enjoy great interest from potential tenants.”
Seven months after the start of the investment involving the construction of new manoeuvre and storage yards in the Port of Gdynia, the general contractor – NDI from Sopot – has already completed the earthworks, strengthening of the ground, construction of the retention tank and 90 per cent of the land development works. The area of over 17 hectares will be used to store containers and wind farm elements. The net worth of the contracted works will amount to approximately 70.7 million zloty.
“Even before winter, we managed to commence the laying of the auxiliary substructure, which we are now continuing, and thanks to which we are ready to lay the final layers of the pavement,” says Sylwia Rogall, Project Director at NDI. “The decision to combine several methods of reinforcing the subgrade was a key move in terms of the schedule and pace of the works. This allowed us to carry out works on several fronts at the same time, engaging more equipment units,” adds Sylwia Rogall.
Schedule of works
The material and financial schedule provides for completion of the variable works by the end of June 2021, yet the General Contractor completed them as early as in the first quarter of this year, thanks to the application of several innovative soil improvement methods on both sites, i.e. in the area of approx. 18 hectares. On the majority of the area of the former silting field NDI applied dynamic methods of in-depth compaction, i.e. the DC Dynamic Consolidation method and the RDC (Roller Dynamic Compaction) technology.
“In April, we are planning to start the most important and technologically demanding stage of construction, i.e. the execution of the basic foundation and the concrete surface of the squares. At the same time, works related to the construction of linear drainage and works in the electrical and telecommunications industry will be carried out. At the same time, outside the construction site, steel elements for the fence and platforms for refrigerated containers are being produced in the prefabrication plant,” adds Sylwia Rogall.
As of the end of the first quarter, the progress of underground utilities works was 90 per cent of the schedule providing for work completion by the end of September 2021. At square 1, key works related to the laying of the base course of lean C 8/10 cement concrete are already underway, as planned for May this year, the commencement of which has been accelerated.
“Infrastructure investments in the Logistics Centre in the western part of the Port of Gdynia are the key issue for the Outer Port project. This strategic investment of the Port of Gdynia is to provide the necessary access infrastructure, both from the land and the seaside. It requires the creation of appropriate facilities that will enable efficient goods handling. Increasing the reloading capacity is an opportunity that, in order to be fully exploited, needs to be provided with favourable conditions for further development,” comments Adam Meller, President of the Board of the Port of Gdynia.