Prince Rupert expanding container capacity by 500,000 TEUs

The following is the text of a news release from the Prince Rupert Port Authority:

(PRINCE RUPERT, British Columbia) — Maher Terminals Holding Corp., the operator of the Port of Prince Rupert’s Fairview Container Terminal, today announced its decision to proceed with expansion of the 7-year-old facility, increasing its container capacity by 500,000 TEUs to accommodate growing container volumes and further enhancing the Canadian gateway’s growing role in North American trans-Pacific trade.

“Intermodal customers have been capitalizing on the advantages of Prince Rupert as part of their transpacific trade solution since Fairview’s first phase opened in 2007,” said Don Krusel, president and CEO of the Prince Rupert Port Authority. “We’re very pleased to see Maher Terminals continue delivering on the vision of fast, reliable container service — while creating new opportunities for the workers, communities, and nations who benefit from this trade gateway.”

Since its conversion from a break-bulk handling operation, Fairview Container Terminal has been operated by Maher Terminals. The terminal anchors an efficient trade lane served by CN’s North American Class 1 railroad providing extensive reach into both central Canada and the U.S. Midwest. In seven years of operation, traffic through the Fairview Container Terminal has grown at the fastest pace of any container terminal in North America as shippers have discovered the advantages of speed and reliability that have come to define the Prince Rupert gateway. In 2014, impressive container growth continued, with container volume up 15 percent over 2013 volumes.

Maher Terminals awarded the construction contract to FRPD-BEL Gateway Joint Venture as the prime contractor. The project will provide a second deepwater berth, four additional gantry cranes, and land reclamation to further expand the container yard. On-dock rail trackage will also be expanded through densification of the current track configuration, which will be supported by a rubber-tired gantry crane operation. The terminal expansion will increase the capacity to over 1.3 million TEUs annually, and is scheduled for completion in mid-2017.

Gary Cross, president and chief executive officer of Maher Terminals, said, “The two-berth, eight-crane operation that the expanded Fairview Container Terminal will provide, together with the intense focus on delivering industry-best dwell times, assures ocean carriers and beneficial cargo owners alike that the Prince Rupert gateway will continue to flourish as a premium service provider by remaining comfortably ahead of demand.”

Claude Mongeau, president and chief executive officer of CN, said, “Maher Terminals’ terminal expansion to accommodate growth is very good news for our customers and the Prince Rupert gateway. It goes to show how supply chain collaboration and innovation can produce a highly successful transportation product that has real market appeal.”

“Today’s announcement affirms the value of the forward-looking investment in Prince Rupert’s original Fairview Terminal conversion project,” said Krusel. “The strategic vision, partnership and alignment of the original partners — Maher, CN, the governments of Canada and British Columbia, and the Port of Prince Rupert — seized an opportunity that is still paying dividends today.”

By Professional Mariner Staff