The NSW Government granted a planning approval (State Significant Infrastructure approval) on 24 December 2013 for the capital dredging of twelve new berths in the South Arm of the Hunter River.
The locations are:
- Mayfield berths 1 to 7;
- Walsh Point berths 1 to 3
- Kooragang 1 berth;
- and Dyke 3 berth.
Newcastle Port Corporation was the proponent at the time and had conducted extensive community consultation as part of the planning approval requirements.
The development of new berths will contribute to the diversification of trade through the port in assisting the development of vacant port side industrial land. The project will be undertaken in stages to accommodate future trade needs.
The first stage will comprise capital dredging of a dedicated bulk liquids common user berth (Mayfield 7) which is being constructed by Stolthaven and is expected to be complete and operational by the end of 2017. A timeline for the other berths has not been developed at this stage.
In accordance with the conditions of the planning approval, a baseline study has been undertaken to understand the current status of salt marsh and salt marsh monitoring will be conducted for a period before and after any dredging. A range of other monitoring programs and management strategies will be undertaken by Stolthaven in compliance with the conditions of approval.