New Plaquemines Port and APM Terminals container facility planned

The facility will enhance the port’s access to 33 states.
The facility will enhance the port’s access to 33 states.
The facility will enhance the port’s access to 33 states.

The Plaquemines Port Harbor and Terminal District, aka Plaquemines Port, has executed a letter of intent with APM Terminals (APMT) – one of the largest terminal operators in the world – to build a state-of-the-art container terminal on the West Bank of Plaquemines Parish, La. 

“APM Terminals is a world leader in container terminal operations. This major commitment shows the market’s tremendous confidence in Louisiana as the home of vibrant, growing port activity” said the state’s governor, Jeff Landry.

The deal calls for Plaquemines Port to lease 200 acres to APM Terminals under the terms of a 30-year agreement with options to expand the facility even further. 

APMT estimates the initial investment in terminal infrastructure will be approximately $500 million, which will be privately funded.

Development of the terminal “will truly make Plaquemines ‘the Louisiana Gateway Port.’ The geo­graphic and strategic advantages are overwhelming,” said Plaquemines Port Executive Director Charles D. Tillotson.

According to officials, the planned terminal will position the port as the closest to the mouth of the Mississippi River with the widest ship turning radius. The project, they said, holds significant potential to enable new business west of the Mississippi River.

A fully-operational terminal “would allow for new grain, coal, and chemicals markets of import and export cargoes while continuing to grow the various existing Louisiana markets,” they said. The facility “will enhance the port’s access to 33 states and “allow businesses to benefit from barge, rail, and interstate highway access across much of the U.S.”

The initial phase will encompass on-dock rail and a berth capable of handling the 14,000-TEU ships now traversing the expanded Panama Canal. The agreement includes options to expand the site up to 900 acres for terminal expansion and complementary logistics operations. 

“In time, this greenfield site has all the potential to evolve into one of the big ship gateways into the U.S.,” said Wim Lagaay, APM Terminals’ senior investment advisor to the CEO. 

“This venture allows us to build from the ground up, integrating cutting-edge technologies and sustainable practices to create a modern logistics hub that lifts standards of safety, efficiency, and productivity.”

The collaboration with the Plaque­mines Port and local stakeholders, he added, “is key to developing a facility that sets new industry standards and serves as a boon to the economic vitality of the region.”

APM Terminals currently operates 64 container terminals globally, including facilities at a number of U.S. ports including Los Angeles, Oakland, New York/New Jersey, Houston, Charleston, and Mobile.