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May 21, 2020 by  
Filed under Top Stories

Port of Tyne is the sixth port to join the Connected Ports partnership. Image: Port of Tyne

The first UK port has joined a data-sharing ports partnership that aims to improve efficiency and reduce the costs of trade, as well as carbon emissions.

Port of Tyne is now a partner of Connected Ports, which aims to transform the way ports operate through pooling data and resources.

Matt Beeton, CEO at the Port of Tyne, said: “We are excited to join this innovative, world-leading and collaborative initiative. We look forward to learning from each other and being the first in the UK to work towards co-creating a global hub of connected ports by extending important maritime developments such as data standardisation.”

Connected Ports partners include the ports of Rotterdam, Gdansk, Helsinki, Hamburg and Los Angeles.

The first step in joining the Connected Ports Partnership will see the Port of Tyne advance data sharing practise by adopting shared technology to co-develop a mutual platform for monitoring shipping and environmental data.

Since launching the UK’s first Maritime 2050 Innovation Hub in July last year, the Port of Tyne has been collaborating to develop solutions to technological challenges facing the maritime sector and the wider logistics industry.

Joyce Bliek, director of digital business solutions at Port of Rotterdam, said: “The Connected Ports Partnership is about co-creating new models of data exchange, and collaboration is vital for sustainable development across international gateways. Ports have a major role to play in using smart technology that can improve global logistics.”

The Port of Blyth is reconstructing and strengthening the quay on the Bates Terminal site. Photo: David Darbyshire/ Port of Blyth

Major redevelopment construction works costing GB£3m have begun at a UK port to improve accessibility and capability.

The Port of Blyth, which operates as an offshore energy support base, is reconstructing and strengthening the quay on the Bates Terminal site. A kilometre of new roadway is also being built to improve access, and considerable earthworks are taking place to level the development site. The North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) provided GB£2.85m investment for the redevelopment work, which is part of a GB£20m five-year investment plan for the Bates terminal.

Having consolidated two neighbouring sites into a single terminal with multiple quays, the site is already home to several of the Northumberland port’s major tenant businesses. Once completed, the works will unlock 6Ha of prime quayside land on site and provide an additional heavy lift quay, with the land development opportunity expected to generate significant interest from a range of sectors including offshore wind/renewables and liquid bulks.

Martin Lawlor, chief executive of Port of Blyth, said: “Commencing these works is another major milestone in the development of Port of Blyth. While the reconstruction of the quay will provide increased flexibility and availability at a time when demand is high, the earthworks on site will open up exciting opportunities for redevelopment on areas of the existing terminal and recently acquired land.”

The principle contract for the Bates Terminal works has been awarded to County Durham civil engineering firm Hall Construction, with the project expected to be completed by November 2020.

The terminal redevelopment comes at a time when Blyth’s Energy Central partnership is approaching completion of the GB£32m Northumberland Energy Park (phase 1) on the former Blyth Power Station site.

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