Cruise NewsCarnival Cruise LineConstruction Begins on Carnival Cruise Line's New Terminal

Construction Begins on Carnival Cruise Line’s New Terminal

Canaveral Port Authority and longtime cruise partner Carnival Cruise Line officially broke ground for construction of Port Canaveral’s new Cruise Terminal 3 complex. Terminal 3 will be the home for Carnival’s largest ship ever, Mardi Gras.

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The new terminal, dubbed the Launch Pad, will be the home of Mardi Gras, the cruise line’s newest and most innovative ship, beginning in 2020. Port Authority Commissioners and the Port’s leadership team joined Carnival Cruise Line executives for the ceremonial groundbreaking at the project site as NASA’s “Spaceman” planted a Carnival Cruise Line flag on a simulated lunar landscape.

The event theme, “Go for Launch,” was a nod to the Port’s key role with the U.S. space program and the terminal’s futuristic design, which was inspired by nearby Kennedy Space Center. The $163 million terminal project – the largest in the Port’s 65-year history – is scheduled for completion in May 2020 and will be ready for the arrival of Mardi Gras to her year-round Port Canaveral homeport in October 2020.

The contract to build the two-story, 187,000 sq. ft. terminal facility and adjacent six-story parking garage was awarded to Merritt Island, Florida-based Ivey’s Construction. The terminal will feature a high-tech baggage processing facility and a state-of-the-art check-in and security area on its second floor, with kiosks and seating for 1,700 guests. The six-story 692,000 sq. ft. parking garage will accommodate 1,800 vehicles.

Construction of the cruise terminal’s marine facility got underway last year with a contract awarded to Titusville, Florida-based contractor RUSH Marine to remove the existing pier structures at the site and build a new 1,309-foot-long berth for Mardi Gras. Substantial completion of the project is scheduled for December 2019.

Port Canaveral’s Launch Pad will be homeport to Carnival’s largest and most innovative cruise ship, Mardi Gras, which will be powered by liquified natural gas (LNG) – part of Carnival Corporation’s “green cruising” platform. Mardi Gras will be the first cruise ship in North America to be powered by this clean fuel technology.

Port Canaveral has worked with federal, state and local public safety and regulatory officials to ensure the Port’s safety readiness for the ship’s arrival. Fuel providers will employ widely used and proven safe best practices of a ship-to-ship “bunkering” refueling, which is regulated by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Currently under construction in Meyer Turku, Finland, Mardi Gras will arrive at Port Canaveral mid-October 2020 and will feature BOLT, the first roller coaster at sea, 20 passenger decks and six distinctive theme zones of fun, dining and entertainment: Grand Central; the French Quarter with Emeril’s Bistro 1396, the first restaurant at sea created by famed New Orleans chef Emeril Lagasse; La Piazza; Summer Landing; Lido; and the Ultimate Playground.

After a special eight-day cruise to the Caribbean on Oct. 16, 2020, Mardi Gras will commence year-round seven-day cruises on October 24, 2020 to the Eastern and Western Caribbean.

Eastern voyages will take the cruise ship to San Juan, Puerto Rico, Amber Cove, Dominican Republic, and Grand Turk in the Turks and Caicos, while Western sailings will travel to Cozumel and Costa Maya, Mexico, and Mahogany Bay (Isla Roatan), Honduras.

First-day bookings for Mardi Gras in January 2019 broke opening-day sales records for a new Carnival ship.  View Prices on Cruises on Mardi Gras

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Ben Souza
Ben Souza
Ben is a world traveler who has visited 40+ countries, taken over 70 cruises. He is one of USA TODAY's experts for their 10Best Readers' Choice Awards. His writings have appeared and been cited in various media outlets such as Yahoo News, MSN, NPR, CNN, Fox, and ABC News. Ben currently resides in Cincinnati, Ohio. Follow Ben on Instagram. Visit Ben Souza on Linkedin. You may email Ben at [email protected].
Cruise NewsCarnival Cruise LineConstruction Begins on Carnival Cruise Line's New Terminal


  1. I crusied on Fastnation in 2015 . Got back to port in Jacksonville FL. Sept 26 , 2015 and I would love it if the port there would return my birth certificate and boarding papers . I need my birth certificate ! Send it to PO Box 66 Waco , GA. I paid 40 dollars for my birth certificate so you could pay me back or send mine . Been trying to get them ever since Oct 4, 2015. Thank you

  2. I went on a cruise a few years back out of Baltimore on the Carnival Pride that has to be the worst ship as far as cruise ships go in your line of Fleet it was a 14 day cruise with an upgrade for a larger balcony I had previously been on three other Carnival Cruises and had a fantastic time this ship had nothing to offer no late night snacks terrible I haven’t been on a Carnival Cruise since sorry to say just

  3. Through an entire article, it seems you haven’t said where the new facility will be located… Galveston? Fort Lauderdale? New York?….

    Might want to adjust that.

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