Leghorn: Lorenzini-MSC's containerization received the green light
The terminal will be able to handle mainly containers until two months after the publication of the contract notice for the Europa Platform, while the Port Authority is continuing the expropriation procedure regarding former Trinseo areas, with the related dispute with Sintermar
Who knows whether the solution found by the Port Authority Management Committee of Leghorn will be able to appease TDT – Terminal Darsena Toscana and prevent it from withdrawing its expression of interest (being the only one submitted so far) for the creation of the Europa platform?
The contested matter is the request submitted by the Lorenzini terminal (a partnership between the Lorenzini-Grifoni families and MSC group) to amend its business plan in order for container traffics to prevail since in the past years they grew more steadily than multipurpose traffics which, however, according to TDT should remain pre-eminent in compliance with the Port Regulating Plan.
The Committee recently approved the update of the plan, but there are two problems. First of all, the opinion of the Committee concerning the Detailed Implementation Plan, which will allow to amend the functional assignment of areas under concession (up to 2029) to Lorenzini, was postponed.
Secondly, according to a note issued by the body, the amendment concerning Lorenzini will be "pro-tempore": Lorenzini will be able to handle mainly containers, not until the entry into service of the Europa Platform, rather only until 60 days after "the publication of the contract notice to grant, through project financing, a concession to create and manage the first stage of the Europa Platform". Within said date, Lorenzini will have to submit "a new business plan consistent with the estimates of the Technical Update to the Detailed Implementation Plan related to the development forecasts of Multipurpose traffics”. “Therefore, from that moment onwards container handling operations that are incompatible with the operations of the Europa Platform will be allowed on a residual basis (as defined by a specific study related to container traffics)”.
It remains to be understood whether the creation of another container terminal pro tempore is a feasible option for TDT, whose managing director Giulio Schenone declared to the local newspaper Il Tirreno that “in case of another container terminal, our group will not be able to formalize the proposal” related to the Europa Platform.
The Europa Platform issue is not the only contested matter about which the Committee had to express its opinion. As anticipated by Ship2Shore, the Port Authority prepared a preliminary project to regenerate the former Trinseo areas, being private areas governed by the Port Regulating Plan. The project provides for the transformation of the entire area into a yard in order to use its 113,860 meters to store Ro-Ros and new cars, with the possibility to build a car silo to increase the vehicles storage capacity.
The problem is that the owner of the area has already entered into a preliminary sale agreement with Sintermar which, despite the Port Authority's requests, was authorized by the Regional Administrative Court to use the areas immediately to support car traffics. The body pointed out that the “expropriation procedure will continue regardless of the outcome of the dispute”.
The Port Authority is also collaborating with ENEL in order to promote a public-private partnership to regenerate the areas and create a new mooring in the former-Enel area allowing to move back the quay and increase the manoeuvring area (from the current 170 meters to 200 mt). This will allow them to welcome break-bulk ships up to 300 meters long, as well as to outsource handling of forest products from Calata Alto Fondale, which is currently devoted both to cellulose and passenger traffics.
The third amendment suggested for the Port Regulating Plan concerns a 4,500 sm area between Darsena Inghirami and Darsena Toscana.
This area is currently used as a yard and for vehicle traffics, but it was deemed appropriate to turn it into a Multipurpose area in order to improve the existing functions.