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Nissan steering imports through Port of Brunswick

Georgia Ports Authority says 2 dozen manufacturers move vehicles through Colonel’s Island

The Port of Brunswick in Georgia handled 53,600 units of vehicles in August, an increase of 1,700 units compared to the same month last year. (Photo: Georgia Ports Authority)

The Georgia Ports Authority announced Tuesday that Nissan North America has chosen the Port of Brunswick as a new point of entry to serve U.S. markets. 

Nissan North America joins two dozen other auto manufacturers at Colonel’s Island, according to the GPA, which said the 1,700-acre terminal provides immediate access to Interstate 95 and from there, I-10 and I-16. 

The GPA reported Tuesday that August roll-on/roll-off (ro-ro) volumes at the Port of Brunswick grew 3.3% year over year to 53,600 units. 

The GPA said to help accommodate new business, it has developed an additional 85 acres at the Port of Brunswick for storage. In addition, Wallenius Wilhelmsen Solutions is constructing three buildings to support its auto processing operations for Nissan and Infiniti. Those buildings are expected to be completed this fall. 

And the GPA’s board on Tuesday approved spending $60 million on additional buildings, property development and civil infrastructure to expand its ro-ro capacity at the Colonel’s Island Terminal. The new slate of projects comes in addition to $186.8 million in improvements the board approved in January and March, the GPA said. 

“With WWS expanding its presence to make Brunswick a hub port for its auto processing, combined with new customers such as Nissan coming onboard, Colonel’s Island Terminal is poised to become the nation’s premier gateway for vehicles and heavy machinery,” Joel Wooten, the GPA board chairman, said in a news release. “With the enormous asset of space, our facility provides ample room to take on new business with on-site auto processing for services such as accessory installation.”

The Port of Brunswick earlier this year received federal approval to add a fourth berth at Colonel’s Island to more efficiently accommodate vessels with a capacity to carry more than 7,000 vehicles.

The new berth will include a concrete deck and system of mooring dolphins extending ro-ro berthing space from 3,355 feet to 4,630 feet, the GPA said, adding that construction was expected to begin by the end of 2022 and take two years to complete. 

The GPA touts the Port of Brunswick as the second-busiest U.S. hub for ro-ro cargo, behind only Baltimore. The port moved 650,000 units of vehicles and heavy machinery in 2021, a 10% increase year over year. 

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Click here for more American Shipper/FreightWaves stories by Senior Editor Kim Link-Wills.

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Kim Link Wills

Senior Editor Kim Link-Wills has written about everything from agriculture as a reporter for Illinois Agri-News to zoology as editor of the Georgia Tech Alumni Magazine. Her work has garnered awards from the Council for the Advancement and Support of Education, the Georgia Institute of Technology and the Magazine Association of the Southeast. Prior to serving as managing editor of American Shipper, Kim spent more than four years with XPO Logistics.