This is great news for the Industrial sector. We expect imports to rise during the next 5 years as The United States regains forward momentum.
The Panama Canal project, scheduled to be completed in 2014, will increase the amount of containers headed to the eastern ports. This increase in containers will subsequently increase demand for Industrial Real Estate.
McClatchy-TribuneNovember 26, 2010|1:59 p.m.
Georgia and South Carolina’s $500-million Jasper Ocean Terminal is being designed to handle 7 million cargo containers a year.
Among U.S. seaports, only two — Los Angeles and Long Beach — have ever moved more than 7 million cargo containers in a year. Now, an East Coast project is aiming to become the third to accomplish that feat.
The $500-million Jasper Ocean Terminal, on the Savannah River near the Port of Savannah, is being jointly developed by the states of Georgia and South Carolina. The port will be built to handle 7 million cargo containers annually. That’s a mark that Los Angeles hasn’t hit since 2008 and that Long Beach hasn’t reached since 2007.
The two states bickered for years over the property that at one time was owned by the Georgia Department of Transportation. Then, three years ago, South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford and Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue agreed to develop the tract jointly. There has since been steady progress.
Permits for the project could be requested as early as 2012, says David Sanborn, a consultant for the project who works for Long Beach-based design engineering firm Moffatt & Nichol.
The new port is planned for the South Carolina side of the Savannah River and is to feature 10 berths, a turning basin and road and rail infrastructure on approximately 1,000 to 1,100 acres of the 1,500-acre site.
Both states have yet to approve compacts next year so the project can move forward, according to Joint Project Office Chairman Jim Balloun.
Asked whether he thought a 2012 timetable was overly optimistic, Balloun said he didn’t know.
“We have a couple of new governors, and as we go forward in the next year we have some work to do for ourselves. But we also have a big education project to let people know what we’ve done, what the plan’s going to be for this port and why it’s necessary,” he said.
“It’s all about being prepared for the growth of container traffic that’s coming with the Panama Canal expansion in 2014,” he said.
“With this new depth, our ability to accept container vessels from the Mid- and Far East will continue to grow as the combination of Charleston, Savannah and Jasper establishes the Southeast as the gateway to commerce for the major part of America.”