COMMENT OF THE DAY: DIRECTING BAYPORT TOURISTS “This terminal sure has had some bad PR. Sure there’s the container terminal right next door, but it’s not so unsightly. And planting a few hundred or so palm trees could even obstruct that view from the roadway if so desired. There aren’t any refineries in the immediate area — lots of homes though.
Those departing from the Bayport Cruise Terminal should be directed to drive from I-45 to NASA Bypass/Parkway to 146 to Port Road — thus avoiding the unsightly industrial area on 225. Make sure the passengers see Clear Lake on their way to the terminal instead of the Port of Houston.
NASA and Kemah are just a few miles from this terminal. Kinda touristy if you ask me. Lots of land available for building hotels, restaurants, and shops too.
It’s not Galveston — no. But it’s not all dark clouds as many make it out to be.” [Thomas, commenting on Comment of the Day Runner-Up: Bayport for Tourists]
COMMENT OF THE DAY RUNNER-UP: BAYPORT FOR TOURISTS “So no rent and docking fees? Which means the port will only be making money off of parking? Maybe something off of the cruise tickets?
The Bayport cruise terminal is a nice feature, but the problem is that it’s located in the middle of nowhere. Most cruise ports are located where passengers can get off the cruise and be a tourist. Even though Galveston is the beginning and ending for many cruise passengers, it is also a destination for many also. New Orleans also feeds off this.
The Bayport terminal is essentially dropping off passengers at a cargo terminal in the middle of a petro-chemical complex. FUN!” [kjb434, commenting on Port of Houston Paying $6.7 Million in Cruise Bait for Suddenly Popular Bayport Terminal]
PORT OF HOUSTON PAYING $6.7 MILLION IN CRUISE BAIT FOR SUDDENLY POPULAR BAYPORT TERMINAL A minor detail missing from last week’s story explaining how the Bayport Cruise Terminal was finally able to lure a couple of cruise lines to its Galveston Bay-side shores, after long 4 years of loneliness and vacancy: the payola. Er, dowry. To entice Princess Cruises and the Norwegian Cruise Line to give up on the overstuffed Galveston Port and stop by for a little on-again, off-again fun with its otherwise antisocial upstream neighbor, the Port of Houston Authority has agreed to dole out a combined $6.685 million to its seafaring suitors. The bulk of cruising-around money will go to the tall Norwegians; Princess will take home $685,000. And both lines will be excused from rent and docking fees. [Houston Chronicle; previously on Swamplot] Photo: Flickr user Silent Z
After waiting for 4 years for any kind of ship to cruise it, the all-but-virginal Bayport Cruise Terminal will at last get a seaborne visitor — starting next year. And it’ll be . . . a Caribbean Princess!
What was it that finally sparked the hookup — the daily grooming and maintenance? The word put out on the street that the $108.4 million taxpayer-funded facility would be willing to do whatever it takes to lure a few sailors to its waiting docks? More likely, the Galveston County Daily News‘s Laura Elder reports, it was just that the popular-with-the-cruising-set Port of Galveston was full-up, and Princess Cruises wasn’t interested in just squeezing in with all the other ships.
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NOBODY WANTS TO CRUISE FROM BAYPORT How’s that effort to bring some actual cruise business — or really, any kind of business — to the Bayport Cruise Terminal going? Not so well. After contacting more than a dozen cruise operators last October, the port authority got no responses. The last and only departures made from the $81 million Pasadena facility, which opened in 2008: a couple of Carnival Cruise Ships shut out of Galveston for a short time after Hurricane Ike. [Bay Area Citizen] Photo: Commercial Care Services
PASADENA STILL WAITING FOR ITS SHIPS TO COME IN The 96,000-sq.-ft. Bayport Cruise Terminal is sitting empty, reporter Jenalia Moreno notices. Still, Port of Houston chairman James Edmonds is optimistic about the future of the 140-acre $81 million facility, which was completed in 2008: “The port is offering to work with cruise lines to develop 40 acres of land near the terminal, hoping that will encourage one to base a ship at the Pasadena property. Restaurants, hotels and other attractions could be built on the land and turn the spot into a destination point, Edmonds said . . . The Bayport cruise terminal was part of a $387 million bond proposal Harris County voters approved in 1999. Cruise ships were calling at the port when voters approved the bonds and when construction began on the new terminal. They were gone by the time the terminal was complete, however, mostly because of financial problems at both cruise lines.” [Houston Chronicle] Photo: Silent Z