Top Ports III - Global Trade Magazine
  April 21st, 2015 | Written by

Top Ports III

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PORT OF BEAUMONT
Ernest Bezdek, director of Trade Development

FTZ No. 115
Big Ship Ready: Target ~2025
Rail: BNSF, KCS, UP
Highways: I-10, U.S. 90
Top Exports: Forest Products, Project Cargo, Agricultural Commodities
Cargo Types: Break Bulk, Dry Bulk

What infrastructure additions has the port made to support shippers over the past two years?
More than $70 million in recent capital improvements include new interchange and holding rail space and additional infrastructure improvements. A new Master Facilities Plan was recently adopted to provide guidance for approximately $500 million in improvements over the next 10 years.

What cargo does your port specialize in, and what assets offer shippers advantages with this type of cargo?
Heavy-lift capabilities are provided by a 140-metric-ton-capacity mobile harbor crane; 220-ton truck crane, 60-ton-capacity gantry crane and 40-ton-capacity lift machine. [The port specializes in] movement of grain, forest products, aggregate, iron and steel, bagged goods, project cargo, military cargo and the newest cargo of bulk petroleum.

What exciting developments are on the horizon?
The port’s Orange County Terminal includes 250 acres on the east bank of the Neches River. The site includes a 650-foot cargo wharf and a new state-of-the-art petroleum terminal that handles unit trains up to 120 cars.

 

Port of Port Arthur
Floyd J. Gaspard, executive director

FTZ No. 116
Big Ship Ready: No
Rail: KCS, UP
Highways: I-10, U.S. 69, U.S. 73, U.S. 82, U.S. 87
Days to South America: 10 days
Top Exports: Forest Products, Iron/Steel, Project Cargo
Cargo Types: Break Bulk

What cargo does your port specialize in, and what assets offer shippers advantages with this type of cargo?
The forest products industry wanted and got the finest transit shed to protect newsprint, linerboard, wood pulp, paperboard, plywood and lumber. We not only duplicated the superior quality of our existing shed, we added extra-large hanger type doors (36 feet wide X 24 feet high); state of the art lighting for around-the-clock safe traffic and an enclosed rail and truck apron for all-weather operations. The metals industry wanted more open storage and rail accommodations and got an extension of the existing 50-car dockside capacity to 150 rail cars for direct transfer; and an asphalt-surfaced open storage up to 18 acres.

What’s your most under-appreciated asset?
Exceptional customer service.

What do you have in place to get trucks in and out fast?
Trucks are expedited through a single entry and exit gate and have appointment load times. Additionally, the port is connected to the KCS Railroad providing direct intermodal service to and from major markets.

 

Port of South Louisiana
Paul Aucoin, executive director

FTZ No. 124
Big Ship Ready: No
Rail: CN, KCS, UP
Highways: I-10, I-12, I-55, U.S. 44, U.S. 61
Days to China: 30 days
Top Exports: Corn, Animal Feed, Wheat/Soybeans
Cargo Types: Containers, Break Bulk, Liquid Bulk

What infrastructure additions has the port made to support shippers over the past two years?
We have constructed a 700-foot-long and 65-foot-wide dock which we call a finger pier, which can facilitate the berth of additional vessels at our main terminal, and it enables barges to moor on the inboard side as well as both vessels and barges to moor on the outboard side. This improves our ship-to-barge and truck-to-barge operations by allowing simultaneous operations on both sides of the finger pier.

What do you have in place to get trucks in and out fast?
We’re just minutes from the I-10, I-55 and I-12 and just minutes from U.S. Highway 61 and U.S. 44. [The state is] widening the main artery, from the interstate to the actual port terminal, to accommodate the truck traffic. With that, it’s smooth sailing from the port to all our major interstates and other highways.

What’s your biggest locational advantage?
It goes without saying: the Mississippi River. We have 54 miles of Mississippi River, but when you count both banks that’s 108 miles of deep water access.

PLAQUEMINES PORT, LOUISIANA

Big Ship Ready: No
Rail: Near Gulf Coast Railroad
Highways: Highway 23
Top Exports: Coal, Grain-Corn, Soybean
Cargo Types: Break Bulk, Dry Bulk

PORT OF GULPORT, MISSISSIPPI
FTZ No. 92
Big Ship Ready: No
Rail: CSX, Kansas City Southern
Highways: I-10, Hwy 49
Top Exports: Linerboard, General Container Cargo, Apparel
Cargo Types: Container, Dry Bulk

PORT OF PASCAGOULA, MISSISSIPPI
Big Ship Ready: No
Rail: CSX, Mississippi Export Railroad
Top Exports: Forest/Paper Products, Frozen Poultry, Petroleum Products
Cargo Types: Break Bulk, Liquid Bulk, Dry Bulk

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