France´s Port of Calais has inaugurated a new $1bn-extension that has been under construction since 2015.

The expansion includes a 3.2km dike, 89 hectares of additional docking area, three new ferry berths and new buildings for operations and reception of port customers. The project is one of the largest recent European maritime construction projects,

The new extension of the port will begin operations on October 4, and it is expected to double the previous capacity for visitors crossing from Dover, UK. On average, Calais welcomes 10 million passengers every year in addition to its extensive freight operations.

However, the expansion is not just about passengers. It is also designed to increase the freight traffic by accommodating larger ferries. DFDS, one of the ferry service providers in Calais, has already introduced a new freight service for unaccompanied freight. The ferry company will soon start running 34 daily crossings to Dover, up from the current 15.

Due to the pandemic, in 2020, passenger traffic declining by 61 percent and freight traffic fell by 8%.

Source: Seatrade Maritime