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Bird’s eye view of Aberdeen harbour expansion

The opening of the visitors centre with the south harbour expansion at Bay of Nigg, Aberdeen. In the picture are  Keith Young, Engineering director, left and Chris Bain, external relations director.
The opening of the visitors centre with the south harbour expansion at Bay of Nigg, Aberdeen. In the picture are Keith Young, Engineering director, left and Chris Bain, external relations director.

Visitors to Aberdeen’s coastline are now able to enjoy a bird’s eye view of the ongoing £350million expansion of the existing harbour.

The facility, which sits above Greyhope Bay, will give people the chance to watch from a high vantage point as the project takes shape to the south of the existing site.

Located at Walker Park, just behind the Girdle Ness Lighthouse, the centre has been designed to be a destination for school groups to learn about the project and the history of the harbour.

It will also be open to people interested in the scheme as well as wildlife fans looking to spot dolphins and seals in the waters below.

Matt North, commercial director for Aberdeen Harbour Board, said: “I think it’s important for the public and all interested parties to come up and see the size and scale of what we are doing.

“This is starting from a position where there hasn’t been the development of a port HQ before, it’s extensive in size and scale and the only way to see how that happens is to come up here and look down and see it unfold.”

Construction began last April and is expected to be complete by the middle of 2020.

The project will involve almost 130,000 sq ft of “lay-down” area and close to 4,600ft of new quayside – making it the largest berthage port in the country.

There will be 10,000 “acripods” weighing between 18-36 tons which will act as an outer barrier on the perimeter of the breakwater.

The breakwater itself will consist of 2million cubic feet of rocks, some of which will be made up of materials that have been dredged up from the sea floor.

Captain Jeff Gaskin, harbourmaster, said it was the most ambitious project he has ever been a part of.

“As the trend is for bigger vessels, this will allow us to meet that demand which we can’t currently.

“The talk was always in the planning stage for a number of years.

“The infrastructure here will benefit the whole region, we have firms who will be able to anchor their businesses here for generations.

“To be involved in this project is brilliant, I never thought I would see a port being built from start to finish.”

The visitor centre is open by appointment Monday to Friday, and 10am-3pm on Saturdays.

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