Following a record year in 2012, the Prince Rupert Port started the new year with a huge increase in shipments. January container shipments were up nearly 17% over the same time last year, grain tonnage shipments were up 71% and coal tonnage was up 162%.
Michael Gurney, corporate communications manager with the Prince Rupert Port Authority, said “We’re continuing to see growth. Specifically, it’s the container terminal at the forefront of being one of the fastest growing terminals in North America.”
Meanwhile, a planned expansion of a Prince Rupert container terminal cleared a key regulatory hurdle recently. The Fairview Terminal, currently designed to handle 500,000 containers annually, will expand to handle 2 million containers annually. The expansion will infill 27 acres of waterfront, add a new wharf and container yard, and rail facilities.
When the project is complete, the facility will be capable of handling 14 ships per week and 10 train movements per day: five inbound and five outbound. The project is being jointly developed with the Canadian National Railway and “New Jersey-based Maher Terminals, one of the world’s largest container terminal operators.” Construction has not yet been scheduled.
Construction is beginning this month on another project: the Ridley Island Road, Rail and Utility Corridor, an earthworks and rock-work construction project entailing 8.6 kilometers of rail and road bed, a concrete box underpass, a utility corridor and installation of inbound and outbound rail tracks.
The Port of Prince Rupert and its neighbor, Port Metro Vancouver, are viewed by many in Washington State as a threat to the Ports of Tacoma and Seattle, and the businesses and jobs across Washington state which the two ports support.
Learn more from our related stories:
“Prince Rupert Port Authority sees 75 per cent increase to start 2013,” The Northern View
“Expansion at Prince Rupert port progressing,” The Western Producer
“Prince Rupert workers needed,” The Northern View
“B.C. ports’ plans could grab more U.S. cargo,” Puget Sound Business Journal