Elizabeth Harbour planning application published

From Port of Jersey
23rd February 2023

​The planning application for the redevelopment of Elizabeth Harbour, as part of the Harbour Master Plan, has been submitted and published on gov.je. A summary of the consultation responses has also been included in an accompanying Statement of Community Participation.

Elizabeth Harbour

The Elizabeth Harbour redevelopment scheme is the catalyst for the wider St Helier Harbour Master Plan and is critical to maintaining the Island’s lifeline, with 98.6% of all goods entering Jersey through St Helier Harbour.

Moving the Lift on Lift off (containerised) freight operation from the New North Quay to co-locate with Roll on Roll off (trailered) freight facilities at Elizabeth Harbour will increase handling capacity, maximise the efficiency of port operations and allow for future capacity requirements.

The scheme proposes a new reclaimed area and a suspended concrete deck constructed over the existing spending beach. The Elizabeth Terminal would be demolished and replaced by a new passenger terminal building in the north-west corner of the site.

The plans also include new facilities for Customs and Immigration, security and freight distribution. These structures have been designed with the materials and colours of the existing St Helier Harbour area in mind, celebrating its rich heritage and strong sense of identity.

The proposed new layout also includes an area of public realm which takes into consideration views from the consultation process. It will include marine pocket parks and a recreational area for children. It also improves access to the observation area south-west of Elizabeth Marina, and views of Elizabeth Castle.

The planning application incorporates a comprehensive Environmental Statement which includes mitigations for the impact of the construction activities, including dredging, in the Elizabeth Harbour area. The buildings include solar panels and are designed with circular design principles. The project aims to minimise any environmental impact, while also providing social value for the Island.

Harbour Master, Captain Bill Sadler, said: “This is a significant milestone in our ambition to increase capacity, flexibility and resilience in our freight handling ability. It also proposes significant improvements to the passenger experience for those using the new terminal. At the heart of the plans are sustainable design and construction methods which are aligned with our Ports, Planet and People Plan and the Government of Jersey’s Carbon Neutral Roadmap.”

The planning process is expected to take around six months.

 Engagement outcomes

Ports of Jersey has also published a summary of the comments submitted by Islanders in a public consultation about the Harbour Master Plan.

Islanders were invited to give their views on proposals for the redevelopment of Elizabeth Harbour in September 2022. They were also asked for feedback on what the harbour area means to them, in a Sense of Place survey.

Summary of consultation activity

  • more than 11,000 visitors to the website je
  • more than 650 news subscribers
  • 464 respondents to the Elizabeth Harbour survey
  • 229 respondents to the Sense of Place survey
  • 3 public consultation events, attracting 152 visitors
  • Fishing community event
  • Technical stakeholder meetings
  • Sense of Place workshops

Elizabeth Harbour survey

The main themes which emerged related to the new passenger terminal building and port operations, traffic congestion and road design, and some of the details of the Harbour Master Plan project.

The survey found that most respondents use Elizabeth Harbour as vehicle passengers, while others said they travelled as motorists or foot passengers, depending on their needs. People also told us that they use the harbour area as boat owners, for recreation, for fishing, or because they live or work nearby.

When asked for their views on the proposals for Elizabeth Harbour, some respondents said they agree that the harbour needs modernising and would like to see more facilities in the terminal building. Others asked for more details about the capacity of queuing lanes for motorists and the impact on traffic in surrounding roads. There were also queries about the potential noise levels when all freight is concentrated in one area, and about the future of New North Quay. Some respondents stressed the importance of retaining the historic nature of the harbour.

When asked about the proposal to replace the terminal building, some people asked why it was no longer fit for purpose when it was only built in the late 1980s, while others said the new terminal should be more passenger-friendly, with upgraded foot passenger tunnels and better access for those with restricted mobility.

Sense of Place survey

Islanders were asked for their thoughts on the look, feel, sights, sounds and smells of the Harbour, as well as for the memories and meaning the harbour holds for them:

  • I played on the quay as a child, so the buzz of the harbour is in my blood I suppose
  • I am a civil engineer and having been involved in a number of projects it all becomes a personal memory and part of its history
  • as a teenager we hung around at the end of Albert Pier with our skateboards. I have vivid memories of it feeling hidden, exciting, and full of real character
  • keeping a small boat on a drying mooring, heading out between the pier heads and later – when the sailing is done – returning to a safe harbour that still caters for local people
  • I spend many hours fishing in and around the harbour, it offers us anglers safety and shelter from bad weather and just happens to be a great place for catching big fish

Respondents said they want the harbour to be vibrant and interesting without losing its charm, and emphasised the importance of finding a balance between a working port and a thriving leisure destination. There was a plea for any redevelopment to retain the harbour’s character and what makes Jersey special.

Connectivity was mentioned, with some saying that the harbour feels cut off from the rest of the town. Respondents said the focus should be on developing an accessible harbour for all, with its Jersey heritage intact, which provides a place for the sea-loving community to thrive with accessible, convenient and affordable moorings. People also want more amenities for Island residents with enhanced views and green spaces, more opportunities for marine traders to do business, for caterers to run stalls, and for artists and musicians to create a vibrant atmosphere.

Harbour Master, Captain Bill Sadler, said: “These valuable insights have helped us to refine the design for Elizabeth Harbour, and consider how we might develop future projects, by giving us a better understanding of how Islanders are currently using the harbour area. We would like to thank all those who provided feedback to the consultation.”

Port of Jersey