Navitus Bay O&M base shortlist

The developer of the Navitus Bay wind farm has named a shortlist of three southern England ports to serve as operations base for the 1.1GW offshore project.

Navitus Bay will sign memoranda of understandings (MoUs) with Poole and Portland on the Dorset coast and Yarmouth, on the Isle of Wight.

The developer – a 50/50 joint venture between EDF of France and Dutch utility Eneco – claims the port eventually chosen as O&M base could reap a £670m ($1bn) economic windfall over 25 years.

Mike Unsworth, project director of Navitus Bay, said: "I am delighted that following constructive discussions with Poole, Portland and Yarmouth, we are able to commit to using a local port for operations and maintenance. These port authorities have worked closely with us to get to this point, and I would encourage local businesses to do likewise.

"We will now seek to identify further opportunities for these ports to host construction and installation activities."

The UK Round 3 project was originally known as the Isle of Wight zone. The developer last year reduced the maximum number of turbines to be deployed at the site to 218 from 333.

The developer expects to submit a consent application to the UK government in the first quarter of 2014.