The Californian port said it is prospering despite Ports America and Terminal Investment Ltd. ending their operations at the Outer Harbor Terminal last year.
Source: Sheila Fitzgerald/Shutterstock
The port handled 1.83 million TEUs of loaded containers in 2016
What a difference a year makes at the Port of Oakland.
West Coast ports are expected to see volumes grow between three to four percent next year, and the Port of Oakland believes it will do even better.
“We are on a bit of a roll,” Port of Oakland Executive Director Chris Lytle said Thursday during his “state of the port” address. The port experienced record cargo volumes last year, record revenues and increased traffic at its airport.
Lytle’s presentation and the mood of the audience was much more upbeat than a year ago when he had to address concerns in the wake of the decision by Ports America and Terminal Investment Ltd. to declare bankruptcy, thus ending their operations at the Outer Harbor Terminal, which handled 30 percent of the port’s cargo.
Lytle had said then that other terminals at the port could withstand the pullout, and even benefit, because they would put more volumes through underutilized facilities. Both Oakland International Container Terminal and TraPac absorbed the business of the Outer Harbor Terminal.
Last year, the port handled 1.83 million TEUs of loaded containers, a 7.6 percent increase over 2015, and besting the previous record of 1.82 million TEUs set in 2013.
Port Authority revenues hit a high of $338 million, and Fitch upgraded the port’s bond rating from A- to A.
In order to handle the higher volumes of cargo, container terminals at the port started a second shift from 6:00 p.m. to 3:00 a.m. in 2016, which spreads cargo pick-ups and deliveries over a much longer period of time.
The terminals have also adopted truck appointment systems, reducing truck idling and pollution, and the port is now working on creating a single portal for truckers to use at all its terminals.
Lytle said the port also plans to break ground on a 300,000-square-foot “Cool Port” facility for transloading up to 30,000 containers of beef and pork annually from railcars.