The container terminal of the Port of Huelva, as well as the ro-pax terminal, are located in the so-called South Quay, inaugurated by the Port Authority at the end of 2004, with a clear vocation to accommodate general containerised and ro-ro cargo traffic such as that which currently takes place in its facilities.
The quay is located in the outermost part of the Huelva estuary, in an area very close to the mouth of the harbour, which makes it very easy and quick for ships to access and exit. Its current 13-metre draught at low tide, which due to its construction characteristics can be increased to 15 metres by simply deepening it, without modifying its structure, is currently undergoing a process to extend its mooring line to a depth of 17 metres at low tide, which will allow access to vessels of greater capacity.
The container terminal located here has been under concession since 2018 to the company Yilport Holding ING, one of the world’s largest container terminal operators, and covers an area of 5 hectares, with capacity for a maximum of 200,000 TEUs and connections for more than 250 reefer containers.
This facility has the railway terminal annexed to it on the inside, where containers are received and dispatched by rail from/to Majarabique, the Port of Huelva’s railway terminal located in Seville, Madrid and Elvas (Portugal). The fact that the two facilities are close together allows the movement of containers from one terminal to the other without any solution of continuity, and therefore better economies of scale. With the project for the transport of lorry trailers by rail (ferroutage), it is planned to complete the full operation of this rail terminal.
These two terminals, container and rail, together with the ro-pax terminal also located on this quay, make up the South Quay Logistics Platform where shipping companies such as Containership, Alisios Shipping, FRS, Balearia, Fred Olsen, among others, which mainly manage regular lines with the north of Europe and the Canary Islands, currently operate.
This ro-pax terminal is a public terminal managed directly by the Port Authority, which currently has a double ro-ro ramp and almost 7 hectares of surface area for the storage and waiting of goods and passengers. This facility is subject to an expansion project that will double its current capacity, through the commissioning of a maritime passenger terminal and a new double ro-ro ramp, which together with the current one will allow 4 ships to operate at the same time.
With the official designation of the Port of Huelva as a node of the Atlantic Corridor of the Trans-European Transport Network as of 1 January 2021, the terminal in its current conditions will become the peninsular extension point of this corridor by sea to the Canary Islands.
The maritime connection with the Strait of Gibraltar, which the Port of Huelva has been pursuing for some time, will allow this dock to extend its current maritime connectivity to more than 100 different international destinations.
Work is currently underway to expand the terminal by up to 20 hectares and the berthing line by up to 975 metres. This project will enable the Port of Huelva terminal to become a reference point on the southern Atlantic coast.