Ships as big as Independence of the Seas could be brought close to Dublin city centre in a new plan to dredge deep-water berths.
Vessels as long as 340m (1,115ft) could dock beside the east link toll bridge, within 20 minutes walk of O’Connell Bridge in the hub of the capital. Larger ships currently dock at the Alexandra basin, a few kilometres from the city centre.
Dublin Port Company has begun consultations and a planning application for the work is expected to be submitted in September. Ireland’s transport minister Leo Varadkar said: ‘This will greatly enhance our tourism offering. Today is the first step and is good news for the port and for the city of Dublin.’
Eamonn O’Reilly, the chief executive of Dublin Port Company, said: ‘Our location at the heart of Dublin beside the city’s shops, restaurants and bars, as well as proximity to the airport, makes Dublin Port a very attractive destination for major cruise liner operators.’