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January 6 2020

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40 The Journal of Commerce | Januar y 6 2020 Maritime 2020 ANNUAL REVIEW & OUTLOOK shipped to and from the Midwest. "We're going to start to really turn up the pressure and work with the [rail] lines and carriers to try and really become a viable alternative for discretionary markets," port spokes- man Sean Mahoney said in October. Boston will complete a $215 million project to build a 50-foot deep berth and add three new cranes at the Conley Container Terminal. A second phase to build a third berth, additional reefer storage and new in and out gates is expected to be completed in 2021. Mid-Atlantic aims The Port of Baltimore's top priority in 2020 is to push ahead with the project to increase the height of the Howard Street Tunnel to allow for the passage of double-stacked in- termodal trains. The port in Decem- ber secured the final $103 million needed to fully fund the $466 million project, which is necessary to make a serious sales pitch to cargo owners in the Midwest. Baltimore also is working with Ports America Chesapeake, which operates the port's only container terminal, to develop a new 50-foot deep container berth that would allow the Port of Baltimore to COMPETITION AMONG PORTS on the US East Coast for cargo — especially for discretionary imports — will intensify in 2020 as ports promote terminal infrastructure upgrades and dredging projects to increase business after solid container vol- ume growth in 2019. One of two major terminal upgrades at the Port of New York and New Jersey will be ready at the start of 2020, as will the construc- tion of a new berth extension in the Port of Boston and a dredging project at the Port of Philadelphia. Berth upgrades completed in 2019 can be fully flexed out in Savan- nah, Charleston, and Portsmouth, Virginia. And significant progress should be made on berth upgrades in Norfolk, Jacksonville, and a new North Charleston terminal in 2020, although the latter two will not be complete until 2021. The upgrades are designed to handle East Coast volume growth that easily outpaced that on the West Coast in 2019. Through September, cargo volumes grew 3.7 percent year over year to 13.23 mil- lion loaded TEU on the East Coast and 0.8 percent to 12.3 million on the West Coast, according to PIERS, a sister product of The Journal of Commerce within IHS Markit. Ports along the coast are seeking to show they can handle bigger vessels and larger cargo discharges than they faced in the past swiftly and smoothly, without chassis shortages, elevated turn times, truck backups, or extend- ed vessel waiting times. Northeast enhancements At the Port of New York and New Jersey, Port Newark Container Ter- minal (PNCT) expects to complete its $500 million terminal upgrade in the early weeks of the year, as APM Ter- Making room US East Coast ports vie for rising cargo volumes By Hugh R. Morley and Ari Ashe minals in Elizabeth puts the finishing touches on its $200 million upgrade, which includes the expected launch of the terminal's first appointment system in the first quarter. The PNCT improvement will more than double the terminal's ca- pacity to 2.4 million containers and enable it to handle two 14,000-TEU vessels at once. The upgrade features an expanded footprint; improve- ments to its electrical, global posi- tioning, and Wi-Fi equipment; and the addition of six super-post-Pan- amax cranes. The APM upgrade includes four new cranes and the strengthening of a berth that will allow the terminal to handle three mega-ships at once. The Port of Philadelphia is also hoping to expand its share of big vessels, albeit from a much small- er base, with the completion of a dredging project in early 2020 to deepen the port to 45 feet. Phila- delphia's only container terminal — Packer Avenue Marine Terminal — expects to complete most of a four-year, $200 million upgrade in 2020 that will increase its capacity from about 600,000 TEU to 1 mil- lion TEU. The port, like others on the coast, is hoping to fatten its cargo volumes with discretionary imports

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