Even though the celebration in 1933 focused on the opening of the Charl Malan Quay, this project represented more than just the construction of one quay. Instead, it represented the conversion of the port into a proper enclosed harbour.
None of the river mouths on the Algoa Bay littoral are suitable for use as a harbour. As some stage there had even been suggestions to use the Zwartkops River but these were never advanced to the planning stage.
Finally, the bull was taken by the horns and the jetties and anchorage converted into a proper modern harbour.
Main picture: An aerial view of the Charl Malan Quay under construction
After 50 years of petitions and proposals regarding the creation of a harbour on the site where the 1820 Settlers had landed on the barren and desolate coast of Algoa Bay, the creation of a harbour was finally coming to fruition.
The harbour plans provided for the construction of two quays with all the necessary berthing, cranage and shed facilities inside the area enclosed by (1) the arm taking off at a point near the end of the breakwater and forming the eastern wall of the new harbour entrance and (2) the extended Northern Mole.
The North Arm Quay forms part of the Number One Quay which provides deep water berthage together with facilities which will extend for 610 metres. It is capable of being extended within the enclosed harbour area to provide a total berthing length of just over 1000 metres.
The Number Two Quay was built from a reclaimed approach area about 600 metres south of the north line of quays and provides, parallel with the latter, 840 metres of berthage complete with shore facilities. No 2 Quay was designed so that it could be widened at any time to afford double the berthage.
In order to simplify the railway network and to eliminate transhipment, the narrow gauge terminus was relocated to the east side of the railway station. This afforded it unhindered access to No 2 Quay. In addition, this arrangement eliminated the transhipment of export fruit from narrow gauge to broad gauge goods wagons.
The total construction period was five years for the scheme as a whole. Notwithstanding that, cargo ships with their own derricks are able to use No 1 Quay from the end of 1933 with cranes and shed accommodation available from June 1934. On the other hand, the deep water berthage at the new No 2 Quay was available for use from circa 1936.
The total cost of providing 1000 metres of wharfage and deep water berthage was budgeted at £1,413,440.
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Harbour prior to the Charl Malan Quay
Port Elizabeth of Yore: St Mary’s Church
Port Elizabeth of Yore: New Church in Main Street
Rations, Rules and other Regulations aboard the Settler Ships
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Earliest Photographs
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Empire units in P.E. during the Boer War
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Defences during the Boer War
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Memorials to the Fallen in War
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Fire Damage to the P.E. Advertiser in 1913
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Albany Road
Algoa Bay before the Settlers: Sojourn by Henry Lichtenstein in the Early 1800s
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Captain Jacob Glen Cuyler
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Growth of the Population
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Murders most Foul
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Phoenix Hotel
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Echoes of a Far off War
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Main Street in the Tram Era
Lost Artefacts of Port Elizabeth: Customs House
The Great Flood in Port Elizabeth on 1st September 1968
A Sunday Drive to Schoenmakerskop in 1922
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Horse Drawn Trams
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Trinder Square
The Sad Demise of the Boet Erasmus Stadium
Interesting Old Buildings in Central Port Elizabeth:
The Shameful Torching of Port Elizabeth’s German Club in 1915:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Cora Terrace:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Grand Hotel:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Whaling in Algoa Bay:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: White’s Road:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Slipway in Humewood:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: King’s Beach:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Russell Road:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Sand dunes, Inhabitants and Animals:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: The Horse Memorial:
Port Elizabeth of Yore: Target Kloof:
The Parsonage House at Number 7 Castle Hill Port Elizabeth
What happened to the Shark River in Port Elizabeth?
A Pictorial History of the Campanile in Port Elizabeth
Allister Miller: A South African Air Pioneer & his Connection with Port Elizabeth
The Three Eras of the Historic Port Elizabeth Harbour
The Historical Port Elizabeth Railway Station
Official brochure: Commemorating the Official Opening of the Charl Malan Quay
Port Elizabeth: The Social History to the end of 1945 by Margaret Harradine
Port Elizabeth in Bygone Days by J.J. Redgrave