Port of Savannah April Container Volumes Jump 25.8 Percent

The US Port of Savannah container volumes increased by 25.8 percent in April, with a total volume of 335,337 twenty-foot equivalent container units, or an additional 69,000 units, the Georgia Ports Authority (GPA) reports.

GPA also saw strong growth in roll-on/roll-off traffic, moving 77,574 units through Brunswick and Savannah, a 14.1 percent gain.

The Ocean Terminal, a multi-purpose facility in Savannah, nearly doubled its breakbulk cargo in April – expanding at a rate of 96.3 percent (81,691 tons) to reach 166,489 tons of breakbulk goods. GPA’s total breakbulk tonnage grew by 38.7 percent for April (89,946 tons) to reach 322,603 tons.

The GPA board on Monday approved USD 141.8 million in capital improvements with passage of its fiscal year 2016 budget. To upgrade existing assets, the board allocated USD 33.4 million to improve power infrastructure for cranes, paving, increased rail capacity and other terminal improvements at the ports of Savannah and Brunswick.

Another USD 83.4 million will go toward property development and the purchase of new equipment. Of that, USD 33 million will pay for 30 new rubber-tired gantry cranes. The addition of conductor rails to support Savannah’s transition to more efficient electric RTGs will cost USD 11.5 million and allow 20 more RTGs to run on electricity instead of diesel.

The board also dedicated USD 16.5 million toward the purchase of four new ship-to-shore cranes. The super post-panamax cranes will cost a total of USD 48.19 million.

Meanwhile, USD 3 million will pay for property development needed for expanding business in general cargo at Savannah’s Ocean Terminal. At Colonel’s Island Terminal in Brunswick, USD 5.5 million will go to develop more land to support growing auto volumes.

“Our long-time policy has been to maintain capacity at least 20 percent above demand through timely infrastructure investments,” GPA Board Vice Chairman Jimmy Allgood said.

“By making these commitments now, GPA will be prepared to handle expanding cargo volumes both now and in the future.”

Image: Georgia Ports Authority/Stephen B. Morton