Port Tampa Bay Advances Plans to Build New Cruise Terminal

Islander in Tampa

The Port of Tampa Bay is advancing with a project to build a fourth cruise terminal. According to FOX 13 News, the port commissioners recently hired an engineering firm to design the new facility.

The new cruise infrastructure would be located at north Terminal 6 and would supplement the operations of Port Tampa Bay’s three existing cruise terminals, which are reportedly working at near capacity.

According to port sources, if the project is permitted and approved, it could involve an $80 million investment.

Funding for the project is expected to come from grants, private investors, and other sources, with cruise lines already expressing interest in the project, the news outlet added.

The design process will be carried out by Tampa-based firm HDR Engineering as part of a half-million-dollar deal.

Tampa Bay Port’s board unanimously approved the design contract for the new facility, which would need to be built without disrupting current cruise operations.

According to FOX 13 News, three additional Tampa-based engineering firms submitted proposals for the project, including Moffatt & Nichol, Burns & McDonnell, and Kimley-Horn and Associates.

With year-round cruise operations, Tampa currently serves as a major cruise homeport on Florida’s Gulf Coast.

Several cruise lines, including Royal Caribbean International, Carnival Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Celebrity Cruises, sail from its three cruise terminals.

Royal Caribbean International and Carnival Cruise Line are the largest operators in the port, with multiple ships sailing from Tampa on a year-round basis.

Recently added to the port’s lineup, Margaritaville at Sea now offers a year-round schedule out of Tampa Bay as well.

After a major refurbishment in Europe, the new Margaritaville at Sea Islander debuted in its new homeport in mid-June.

From Tampa, the 2,100-guest vessel offers a series of five- to seven-night cruises to the Western Caribbean and Key West.

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