Ramsey Rail Yard
PORT’S NEW RAIL YARD AN ECONOMIC ENGINE FOR REGION
The Port of Portland and its rail-dependent customers received good news in July with a decision by the Oregon Transportation Commission to contribute $6.8 million in ConnectOregon funding for the Ramsey Rail Yard in Rivergate.
Located close to marine terminals 4, 5 and 6, Ramsey Rail Yard will have six tracks capable of staging, storing and switching trains. The additional capacity will allow the BNSF and Union Pacific more room to store, stage and build trains off of their mainlines. By helping to keep the mainlines clear of trains, Ramsey will improve rail capacity for the whole region.
“Toyota, Honda, Hyundai, Kinder Morgan, Portland Bulk Terminal and Columbia Grain – some of the Port’s largest customers – depend on the ability of trains to quickly transit Portland’s rail network to move their cargos to and from their terminals,” said Marine and Industrial Lands Director Sam Ruda.
“Quite simply, none of these customers would be here without Portland’s excellent rail network,” Ruda said. “Our mineral bulk exporters receive 100 percent of their product via rail. Our auto importers move 75 percent of their autos via rail. Columbia Grain receives about half of their grain via rail. There are also 28 Rivergate Industrial District tenants who depend on
rail. Ensuring adequate capacity on Portland’s rail network is one of our highest priorities.”
Construction on Ramsey starts in the second quarter of 2007 and will take approximately a year and a half to complete. The Port estimates construction will create the equivalent of nearly 249 direct, indirect and induced jobs. The additional rail capacity will also allow Port tenants to increase their cargo volumes, which support thousands of existing jobs, as well as the creation of new jobs.
Funding for the project also included a federal appropriation of $7.1 million, secured with the assistance of Oregon Congressman Earl Blumenauer.
SEAPORT CELEBRATION: SHOWCASING A MARITIME SECRET
Hundreds of adults and children visited Terminal 6 (T-6) on Saturday, August 26 to get a feel for Oregon’s only deepwater container terminal at the Second Annual Seaport Celebration. Located at the confluence of the Columbia and Willamette rivers, T-6 is not easily seen from downtown Portland or major interstates.
Kids of all ages were amazed at the size and scale of the machinery that makes a modern container terminal work. The day included bus tours around the giant cranes, demonstrations of container handling reach stackers and even Captain Bogg and Salty – a Pirate Band.
“This is a great way for the community to get to see how a modern container terminal works and get a feel for our region’s connection to the global economy,” said Port of Portland Executive Director Bill Wyatt.
Left to right: Sam Ruda, Port of Portland marine and industrial lands director; Bill Wyatt, Port of Portland executive Director; Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski; Jeff McEwan, Hanjin Shipping’s regional manager; Greg Borossay, John Akre and Steve Mickelson, Port of Portland marine marketing department.
LOYAL, LONGTIME AND NEW CARRIERS HONORED
More than 150 marine industry leaders and local and state officials converged at the Port of Portland’s marine Terminal 6 for the July 13 Celebrating Connections carrier appreciation event to honor the Port’s key clients and educate stakeholders about the importance of maritime trade.
Port Commission President Jay Waldron, Executive Director Bill Wyatt, and Marine and Industrial Lands Director Sam Ruda were on hand to welcome guests, honor established and newer partners, and show off the Port’s latest Post-Panamax crane.
Said Gov. Ted Kulongoski, “No one should doubt the importance of international trade to Oregon’s economy. The fact is Oregon is an export-trade state. Despite our comparatively small population, we exported more than $12 billion in goods and services last year, and we consistently rank among the top 15 exporting states in the U.S.”
The governor also honored the carriers that serve the Port of Portland including China Shipping, COSCO, CP Ships/Hapag Lloyd, CSAV NorAsia, Hanjin Shipping, “K”-Line, Yang Ming and ZIM.
“It’s a special honor to help show Oregon’s appreciation for the companies we rely on to keep our connection to the global economy alive and functioning – the carriers who bring the products of the world’s marketplace to Oregon’s doorstep and bring Oregon’s goods to customers around the world. We recognize your importance to the economic well-being of our people. You are an indispensable part of Oregon’s economic future,” said Kulongoski.
OREGON GOVERNOR PRESENTS GIANT CHECK FOR GIANT CRANE
The Port hosted Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski at the Terminal 6 container facility in July as he announced the list of projects slated to receive a portion of his $100-million ConnectOregon non-highway transportation funding initiative. As part of that announcement, the governor and Senators Betsy Johnson and Bruce Starr presented a giant $7.5-million check to help purchase the Port’s fourth Post-Panamax container crane.
“This fourth crane will play an important role in helping us attract and retain container shipping lines,” said Port Executive Director Bill Wyatt. “We’re working with a number of shipping lines, which are bringing or are interested in bringing Post-Panamax ships to Portland. With a fourth crane, we’re increasing Portland’s attractiveness to these shipping lines on an exponential scale because it gives us more flexibility to service carriers faster and get them on their way.”
The Port’s new crane, including delivery, spare parts and installation, will cost approximately $10 million. The Port will pay for additional costs beyond the $7.5 million ConnectOregon funding. The Port plans to order the crane as soon as possible and estimates delivery could be as soon as 2008.
In addition to a new crane, the Port also received $6.8 million in ConnectOregon funding to construct a new rail yard in the Rivergate Industrial District (see Ramsey Rail Yard story on page 6) as well as $2.4 million to construct a new barge receiving terminal at Terminal 4.
Left to right: ILWU Local 8 President Leal Sundet, Oregon Senator Bruce Starr, Governor Ted Kulongoski, Oregon Senator Betsy Johnson, Port Commissioner Steve Corey and Port Executive Director Bill Wyatt
T-6 CONTAINER VOLUMES JUMP 21 PERCENT
In the first six months of 2006, the equivalent of 87,250 twenty-foot containers (TEUs) passed through the Terminal 6 container facility. That’s a 21 percent increase over the first half of 2005. This increase does not reflect the full impact of Portland’s two new services from ZIM and Yang Ming because, having started on May 14 and June 15, respectively, they impacted only a month and half of the six-month period.
“In the first half of 2006, we’re seeing the Hanjin/COSCO and Hapag-Lloyd/CP Ships services continue their impressive growth in Portland,” said Port Marine and Industrial Lands Director Sam Ruda.
“We’ll see increasing growth for the rest of the year as we expect the new services will bring an additional 4,000 containers through Terminal 6 each month.”
As of this writing, the Port doesn’t have figures for a full month’s container volumes that demonstrate the impact of the new services. However, June figures are in, and they reflect Hanjin/COSCO, ZIM, Hapag- Lloyd/CP Ships, and a half-month of Yang Ming calls. The Port moved 17,350 TEUs in June, a 64 percent increase over June 2005.
“If June is an indicator, and we have every reason to believe it is, the Port’s container business is headed for a big rebound this year,” Ruda said.
RECORD-SETTING VOLUMES HAS TOYOTA ADDING ACRES
Toyota’s volumes through its Terminal 4 (T-4) auto handling facility have increased so dramatically, the company recently hired 30 new employees and added 15 acres to handle the growth.
“The growth in Toyota’s volume provides more local jobs for automobile handling and helps support jobs in our region’s truck, rail and maritime industries, said Bob Lipscomb, the Port’s marine marketing general manager.
Skyrocketing sales this year have exceeded Toyota’s projections. To accommodate the volume increase, Toyota signed a five-year lease amendment with the Port for an additional 15.28 acres of paved and fenced storage space at T-4. The new property is a portion of land Toyota leased before moving to its redeveloped facility.
So far this year, Toyota has broken a number of records, including bringing in 19,061 cars in February
the company’s highest monthly volume through
Portland. Toyota broke that record in March and again in April, and surpassed it again in June with 22,026 autos. The automaker’s volumes are up 30 percent from last year. If Toyota continues its current pace, it will break two more records: 140 vessel calls (a record number of ships for a year) and nearly 250,000 units imported during 2006 (record annual volume).
The Port estimates each car handled at the Port’s three auto terminals brings $346 in economic benefits to the region. The Port expects to see more than 400,000 Hondas, Hyundais and Toyotas imported through Terminal 4 and Terminal 6 this year, making it a U.S. West Coast auto import leader.
400 DIP THEIR PADDLES AT ANNUAL REGATTA
Using a variety of canoes, kayaks and inflatable boats, more than 400 novice and experienced paddlers participated in the 12th Annual Columbia Slough Small Craft Regatta on Sunday, July 30.
The Columbia Slough Watershed Council, sponsored in part by the Port of Portland, hosted the event, which recorded more than 200 boat launches.
The Regatta has grown into the largest one-day paddle in Oregon, providing local residents, private businesses and regional government agencies the opportunity to celebrate the Columbia Slough’s unique role as a vibrant natural habitat and recreational destination.
The Regatta provides free boats, paddles and life jackets to anyone interested in exploring the Slough. This year’s course began at the Portland Water Bureau’s canoe launch along the Big Four Corners Natural Area. Paddlers kept a keen eye open for deer, coyotes, river otters and birds.
The Port is a member of the Watershed Council and a longtime supporter of efforts to promote a healthy Columbia Slough, which is located between marine Terminal 6 and Portland International Airport.