“This ready infrastructure presents a great opportunity for port customers to reach other out-of-state markets via the intermodal network and is a huge opportunity for port users to balance their traffic flows,” Alfonso says. Port Tampa Bay recently worked closely with an ocean carrier to facilitate the successful launch of a new service that calls at a state-of-the art cold storage warehouse. The facility spans 135,000 square feet and offers more than 6,300 racked pallet positions, on-site fumigation services, 148 reefer plugs, and an adjacent berth served by two dedicated mobile harbor cranes. The Tampa Bay/I-4 Corridor region is the hub for Florida’s grocery and food and beverage sectors. Companies moving perishable products can see substantial savings, Alfonso says. In addition, competitive northbound backhaul trucking rates allow the port to efficiently serve the carrier’s import and export customers beyond Florida. Port Tampa Bay continues to build on its current offerings. Later in 2022, among other projects, construction will begin on a 77,000-square-foot rail- served transload warehouse adjacent to the intermodal rail network and the container terminal.
Along with container shipments, the port is one of the largest in the United States for automobiles, moving about 450,000 in 2021. A number of bulk commodities, including salt, juice, and food-grade oil, also regularly pass through the port. The port serves all major ocean carriers and is the first call for 75% of the ships that come to the port, Bozza says. The Port’s ExpressRail network is a $600-million program with dedicated rail facilities and additional support track and rail yards for the port’s major container terminals. It provides capacity for 1.5 million rail lifts each year, as well as efficient on-dock rail service. The port’s intermodal network handled 709,000 rail lifts in 2021. Often, customers can access their rail containers before the ship even leaves the terminal. “Intermodal is a key element of our growth strategy,” Bozza says. Also critical to the Port Authority’s strong performance, particularly over the past few years, has been its Council on Port Performance (CPP). Originally formed in 2015, it’s composed of all major stakeholders, including representatives from terminal operators, railway systems, customs, labor, trucking, and the Port Authority. The actions taken by CPP members was a primary reason the port didn’t need to shut down, even briefly, during the pandemic. “This group has been instrumental in building business relationships to tackle the issues we’re facing,” Bozza says. For instance, a subgroup of the CPP that focuses on the rail networks collaborated with terminal operators to open additional destinations and alleviate congestion. The skill and dedication of the port’s workforce has also driven performance, even as volumes have skyrocketed, Bozza says. Many employees have been working six days each week to keep port terminals and warehouses open into the evenings and on weekends. “We have a dedicated cadre of workers who are committed to improving our service and infrastructure,” he adds. With cargo volumes continuing to remain elevated, intermodal rail
The port also will add a third deep-water berth, three gantry cranes, and a new gate complex. And unlike many ports, Port Tampa Bay has land for expansion. “Together with our tenants, Port Tampa Bay continues to invest in expanding capacity, so tenants and users can confidently implement their long- term growth plans,” Alfonso says. PORT AUTHORITY OF NEW YORK AND NEW JERSEY: ELEVATED VOLUMES, ELEVATED SERVICE More than 13 million people live within a one-hour drive of the Port of New York and New Jersey, and more than 46 million are within four hours. “We have unequaled access to major North American markets,” says Michael Bozza, assistant director, commercial development. And within 50 miles of the port lie one billion square feet of warehousing and distribution space. The largest port on the U.S. East Coast, the Port of New York and New Jersey handled a record 8.9 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs) of cargo in 2021. In preparation for future growth, it has completed a Port Master Plan that provides a framework to handle forecasted growth of up to 17 million TEUs by 2050.
The Port of New York and New Jersey—the largest port on the U.S. East Coast—handled a record 8.9 million TEUs of cargo in 2021. The port’s intermodal network handled 709,000 rail lifts in 2021. More than 46 million people live within four hours—giving the Port of New York and New Jersey unrivaled access to major North American markets.
98 Inbound Logistics • May 2022
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