New Charlottetown port boss excited about waterfront development opportunities

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New Charlottetown port boss excited about waterfront development opportunities

After 20 years at the Confederation Centre of the Arts, Mike Cochrane is leaving to become the new CEO of the Charlottetown Harbour Authority.

Cochrane will take over in May from Les Parsons, who is retiring after 11 years.

Cochrane joins the port authority as it prepares for its biggest cruise season yet, with the number of passengers visiting in 2018 expected to top 100,000 for the first time.

"The cruise industry is certainly one opportunity that's been growing in P.E.I. ... so we want to maintain that relationship and certainly grow it as much as possible," Cochrane said.

Commercial development along the port's waterfront is also important, he said.

"Waterfronts have become very popular over the last number of years and the Charlottetown Harbour Authority and Founders Hall and that area at Confederation Landing Park, that whole area on the waterfront, is prime for just activity."

Cochrane, who spent the past 10 years as the chief operating officer at the Confederation Centre, will be the second executive to leave this year. CEO Jessie Inman announced she will step down on July 25.

Cochrane said he's leaving the Confederation Centre with "mixed emotions."

"Change is good sometimes for everybody but the staff there are fabulous ... so the next people coming in there will have a great organization to step into."

Cochrane, who lives in Stratford with his wife and two children, said he's excited about his new challenge.

"What I like about the harbour authority is there's a lot of relationship ties with everything in the downtown core and it helps drive business to everywhere."

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