This month, a letter of intent was signed between MSC Cruises and Miami-Dade County to expand cruise operations at PortMiami.
MSC Cruises is to increase its annual passenger throughout at PortMiami and will design, build and operate, two new cruise terminals and associated berths, parking garages, offices, provisioning facilities and marine and other infrastructure at its own expense.
The project’s completion date will be around November, 2022.
MSC is to homeport several of its latest and largest vessels in Miami in the future.
Last year, Miami-Dade county commissioners approved MSC’s plans to build on a 9 acre terminal site with space for one 7,000-passenger ship at a time.
At a meeting in Geneva on 10th January, Miami-Dade Mayor Carlos Gimenez and MSC Cruises signed a letter of intent to build a much larger structure than originally planned. MSC now wants 16.5 acres and enough berthing pace to fit two 7,000-pax ships simultaneously — possibly using two terminals — plus office and other space.
“This agreement represents a blueprint for the further expansion of the cruise operation at the world’s leading cruise port,” said MSC’s executive chairman, Gianluigi Aponte, in a statement.
According to the Miami Herald, MSC is one of four cruise lines to announce ambitious expansions at PortMiami. Royal Caribbean opened its new Terminal A in November, 2018, now home to some of its 5,400-pax ‘Oasis’ class ships, Norwegian Cruise Line plans to open its new terminal at Terminals B and C in November, this year, which will cater for two 5,000-pax ships simultaneously and, the county commission approved Virgin Voyages’ plans to build a terminal, due to open in 2021.