Macau’s new Pac On ferry terminal – located near the city’s airport on Taipa Island – should be ready to start operations in May, said the director of the city’s Marine and Water Bureau, Susana Wong Soi Man.
On Wednesday, Ms Wong said that the bureau is currently carrying out inspections and tests, in order to get the facility ready for operations.
“We are making preparations towards this goal [May opening]. We are having meetings with the ferry companies. They are also testing the facility’s software and hardware,” Ms Wong said as quoted by local public broadcaster TDM.
The Pac On ferry terminal is to have eight operational berths for commercial ferry services at an initial stage, according to the Marine and Water Bureau. Another eight berths for use by commercial ferry services would come into operation in later stages. An additional three “multi-functional” berths would also be made available.
The new terminal will include the first commercial helipad in the Taipa-Cotai area. The Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal – currently the city’s largest – has a commercial helipad.
The Pac On terminal will have the capacity to handle about 400,000 ferry passengers per day, according to the bureau.
One of the purposes of the new site was to help deliver more tourists to the Cotai area and the casino resorts there. Currently many tourists arriving in Macau by ferry disembark at the Outer Harbour Ferry Terminal on Macau peninsula and must then take a shuttle bus or taxi if they wish to go to Cotai.
Currently a temporary Taipa ferry terminal (pictured) – with a limited number of sailings per hour – operates next door to the new facility.
A number of investment analysts have said that new public infrastructure projects could be beneficial for Macau’s gaming market, as it is increasingly focusing on mass-market customers.
“Heading into fiscal year 2017 we are expecting the Macau infrastructure to improve with the opening of the new Taipa ferry terminal, as well as increases in much-needed room supply,” said analyst Christopher Jones, of Buckingham Research Group Inc, in a note earlier this month.
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Amount that each Macau casino operator paid for the circa six-month extension of their respective contract