Brazil's special ports department (SEP) and transportation specialists from the German government plan to prepare a new access project for Santos port by 1Q11, Sao Paulo port authority Codesp said in a release.
Studies for work such as building a waterway access and a tunnel or bridge connecting the two banks of the port's entrance are underway, according to special ports minister Pedro Brito.
"We should have a contract signed by March 2011," the minister said during a seminar on public port management held at port employee union Sindaport's headquarters in Santos.
The port authority aims to emulate the model used at Germany's Duisburg port.
"We need to end the congestion of trucks and, consequently, of ships," Brito said.
Besides an undersea tunnel and waterway link, a railway project is also under consideration for the port, Codesp president Jose Roberto Serra told BNamericas in a previous interview.
The 16km railway line will connect Santos port to the Serra do Mar mountain range near state capital Sao Paulo.