New superyacht marina in Gibraltar nears completion
The Marina Club, a new development of 144 waterfront rental apartments and centerpiece of the eponymous superyacht marina in Gibraltar, is nearing completion. The entire residential complex was built on mini-piles above the water and is accessible via a landscaped pier. The biggest challenge for the designers of the superyacht dock was to coordinate the design of the dock with the overall concept.
Marina Projects of the United Kingdom designed some moorings that rest on pilings around the club and others that rest on a new floating Marinetek superyacht pontoon. All are equipped with head-mooring buoys. The next phase will provide access to the club’s spa decks and facilities.
“The construction of a world-class marina and superyacht facility in Gibraltar has been a major team effort in which I have taken great pride,” said William Bowman, marina director of Ocean Village and Marina Bay Marinas. “This development represents a massive improvement to all available marina facilities. Gibraltar has the first fully serviced berths for superyachts, and we look forward to welcoming vessels up to 90 meters [295 feet] in length.”
The need for the marina to remain open throughout the construction period and to meet the requirements of the nearby Gibraltar Airport presented obstacles. To reduce noise and disruption to surrounding stakeholders during construction, a mini-pile system was chosen to be used throughout the facility.
Despite the obstacles, the existing 270 berth marina was completely redesigned and rebuilt with a mix of fixed and floating Marinetek pontoons selected for their quality, durability and stability. The available water area has been used more efficiently, providing many more, longer and wider berths, better suited to the design of modern yachts. The Mediterranean berths were replaced with modern finger pontoons.
The pile structure that will support the mooring loads for the superyacht pontoon is supported by an underwater structure that is anchored to the seabed at both ends. This means that the entire mooring system for the superyacht pontoon, along with the pontoon it supports, can be raised and removed with the tides. In normal operating mode, this intelligent technology remains hidden on the seabed.
Gregory Butcher, chairman of the contractors, commented, “The entire project was carried out with our own teams of staff and engineers and our own civil engineering equipment, while a busy marina accompanied the entire period. Now we are ready for the next project in Gibraltar!”
The new berths are expected to be completed by the end of the year and be operational by the beginning of 2023.