Port Vieux Fort is very unique in several ways. The Port consist of a 163m long finger pier which allows vessels to be berthed on either side and a 210m LOLO Berth. Unlike the counterpart port in Castries the southern port handles very diversified products such as Bulk Grain imports, Paper Rolls and Petroleum products in addition to the usual imports and exports as done in Port Castries.
Port Vieux Fort in the past has also had its fair share of container traffic having peaked in 2008 with 45,000 TEU’s handled. During that time it was a constant struggle to accommodate container traffic and petroleum tankers which competed for berthing space on the Lolo berth. With the changing fortunes of the port and the demise of the transshipment business, Port Vieux Fort has rarely ever had full berth occupancy.
However, April 20, 2021 proved to be an exciting day for Port Vieux Fort having witnessed the full occupancy of all berths. In fact, the Fun to See Ferry, a designated vessel for the shuttling of passengers between the Hewanorra International Airport and the Rodney Bay Marina and vice versa, quickly diverted to disembarking/embarking passengers via the jetty at Laborie for lack of a berth.
The photo shows the southern side of the finger pier where the M.V. IJESSELBORG discharged Bulk Grain for Caribbean Grains Ltd and on the northern side was the M.V. SYROS WIND loading Aggregates from Wilrock Ltd for Guyana. The Roro ramp was occupied by the M.V. ADMIRAL BAY III loading relief supplies to Saint Vincent and on the LoLo Berth was the M.V. DYNA BULK discharging bulk sand for the HIA Airport Development Project. The M.V JADEN SUN a passenger vessel, also arrived on the said berth with 40 passengers from Mustique, Grenadines for onward connection at the Hewanorra International Airport to the United States of America.
In the upcoming months Port Vieux Fort is expected to handle increased importation tonnages particularly as the HIA Airport Redevelopment Project continues. Containers, steel, cement and other construction materials for that said project should commence arriving at the berths of Port Vieux Fort.
Authored by; Operations Manager at the Saint Lucia Air and Sea Ports Authority, Sylvanus Davis