Categories: Business, HullPublished On: 02.08.2022346 words1.8 min read

New masterplan for Hull’s western docks is like tackling a 1,000-piece jigsaw

New preferred cruise ship terminal at the centre of giant regeneration puzzle

The Dunston dry dock at William Wright Dock (Image: Andy Medcalf)

The go-ahead has been given for a new masterplan to map out long-term regeneration options for Hull’s western docklands.

This week’s formal approval by Hull City Council’s cabinet now sets the wheels in motion for what promises to be a lengthy and unpredictable journey with estimates of it taking anything between five to ten years for ideas on paper becoming concrete reality on the ground. It also officially signalled a switch in the council’s focus in its search for a potential cruise ship terminal site from Sammy’s Point next to The Deep to Albert Dock and, in particular, Riverside Quay next to the Humber estuary.

The decision by the council’s new Liberal Democrat administration is a bit like slotting the first two bits of a 1,000-piece jigsaw into place. Now comes the hard part of making sure the rest of the puzzle comes together without losing the box with the original illustration on the cover and maintaining the will to just get it all finished.

For this sprawling jigsaw not only covers some 140 acres of land and water but also includes a variety of landowners and employment uses, including industrial, manufacturing, trade retail and warehousing. Both ownership and lane use are certain to bring their own complex challenges to the task of working out how a new-look neighbourhood might emerge in the future.

At its heart, Albert and William Wight Docks also date back to 1869 and 1880 respectively. While both are still in active commercial use, a report for the cabinet noted:

“The docks are old and built for 19th century maritime and distribution systems and will become increasingly less compatible with modern port requirements.”

The new concrete storage silo recently constructed at Hull’s William Wright Dock

The report also contained a health warning over the policy change on the cruise terminal location. . . . .

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New masterplan for Hull’s western docks