Challenges for the future of ports. What can be learnt from the Spanish Mediterranean ports?
The tourist development along the Mediterranean coast, especially on the coast of Spain, France and Italy, has caused a huge urban expansion and consolidation of a highly densified harbour front. The environmental consequences should bring about the future growth of the existing system of ports through its re-qualification development. The article provides a list of 6 strategies for the future improvement of ports that correspond to the areas of research in the international port literature. These ideas had been deeply developed in previous works from different disciplines, but they are now put together in order to offer a general vision of the debate: (1) marine strategy and integrated coastal management, (2) sustainable port infrastructures, (3) port networking initiatives, (4) regionalization of ports, (5) urban and landscape connectivity, and (6) social integration of ports. The text collects some literature on each of the views and suggests throughout the topics some ideas to be considered for existing ports in general and specifically for the Spanish Mediterranean ports.