Klaipėda outer port plans worry local residents
Plans to build an 800-million-euro outer port in Melnragė, a seaside neighborhood of Klaipėda, have come under increasing criticism from local residents, the daily Lietuvos Žinios reported on Tuesday.
Locals fear that the project would affect the neighborhood, which is popular with holiday-makers, and its beaches, but the Klaipėda State Seaport Authority says that if an outer port is built, infrastructure for tourism and recreation will be also developed in the area.
The authority says that an outer port would only be built if there is an investor and guaranteed cargo flows.
Artūras Drungilas, the port's marketing and administrating director, says that an outer port is key to ensuring that Klaipėda remains a leading Baltic Sea port in the future.
"Based on preliminary estimates, an outer port would have a cargo handling potential of around 34 million tons annually," he said.
The official confirmed that an outer port would mostly focus on container transshipment as the existing port has limited capacity for expanding container handling operations.