The Nanaimo Port Authority is nearly completion of its new $24 million dedicated cruise terminal, allowing the Canadian port to accommodate ships up to 1,050 feet, said a port official.

The 350-foot by 50-foot pier, ramps and berthing dolphins are expected to be finished by the end of March, said Doug Peterson, director of marketing and sales for the Nanaimo Port Authority. Shoreside, the new welcoming centre, including a Canada Border Service Agency inspection office, port authority offices, as well as a parking and stage shore excursion staging areas will be completed in late April.

“The marine design of the facility was vetted by the The North West and Canada Cruise Association's technical committee and the approaches to the berth were tried out on the simulators at The Star Center in Fort Lauderdale with BC Coast Pilots, various cruise lines shore captains and our engineers in attendance. The positioning of the berth met the approval of both the cruise line and the local pilots, and the facility is also large enough to accommodate the Solstice Class ships that may be plying the West Coast trade once the Panama Canal is widened,” Peterson said.