JAXPORT Cruise Terminal Jackville, Florida
JAXPORT Cruise Terminal is a 63,000 sq ft (5,900 m2) “temporary” cruise ship terminal in Jacksonville, Florida. The facility located at the northwest corner of the Dames Point Marine Terminal, beside the Dames Point Bridge. It was completed in six months during 2003 and is a facility at the Port of Jacksonville, administered by the Jacksonville Port Authority. The baggage handling area is 28,000 sq ft (2,600 m2); and a passenger embarkation section has 15,000 sq ft (1,400 m2). Vehicle access to the site is via Hecksher Drive and there is paved parking for about 600 cars.
Celebrity Cruises began regular service from Jacksonville on October 27, 2003 on the MV Zenith. Celebrity discontinued their service from Jacksonville in 2005.
The ship Carnival Miracle was christened at the Port of Jacksonville on February 27, 2004, beginning Jacksonville service by Carnival Cruise Lines. The Miracle was replaced by Carnival Cruise Lines’ Jubilee, which sailed between JAXPORT and The Bahamas from May 2004 through August 2004. Carnival established year-round cruise service from Jacksonville aboard the Celebration on October 12, 2004. The Celebration continued to sail between JAXPORT and The Bahamas through April 2008. After a four month hiatus in service, Carnival restarted Jacksonville-Bahamas cruise service aboard the Carnival Fascination, which is scheduled to continue service from Jacksonville through April 2013. Current cruises from Jacksonville visit the Bahamas and Key West.
Five cruise ships were chartered to serve as floating hotels during the week preceding Super Bowl XXXIX in February 2005. Four of the vessels docked at JAXPORT terminals, providing over 3,500 rooms plus restaurants and night clubs for fans.
The Jacksonville Port Authority had plans to relocate the cruise terminal. In 2008, an 8-acre (32,000 m2) parcel was purchased in the small fishing village of Mayport as the site of a permanent $60 million facility. The economic crisis delayed the project, and opposition from local residents was vehement; a lawsuit seeking an injunction was filed. In March 2010, the authority announced that they were starting over and reviewing all possible locations for the cruise terminal.
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