In Brief: A proposed port in Maine could see major economic benefits in Saint John. AIMS acting president Charles Cirtwill notes that although ports in Halifax, Sydney and the Strait of Canso may see a new port as competition, projected container traffic from Asia will likely keep all the area’s ports busy.
by David Shipley
A potential US$200-million container port in
The Maine Port Authority is considering a proposal to develop a shipping terminal capable of handling 375,000 20-foot equivalent (TEU) containers on
The facility, which would be built as a public-private partnership, is intended to capturing the rising tide of containerized goods flowing to North America from Asian ports via the
“All of the feeder traffic (that would) serve the Canadian market, the natural port of call (would be)
The idea of a port facility on
Earlier this month, an American consulting firm contracted by the Maine Port Authority, filed a new report arguing that the state could receive significant economic benefits from a new container facility.
“A new port at Searsport will handle an additional 1.5 million ton of breakbulk cargo and 375,000 TEU containers in 2020, and this will create $5.7 million a year in state and local taxes and 2,200 new jobs,” states the report by The Cornell Group Inc. of
“In addition, the economic impact resulting from port construction at Searsport and induced port-related activity will create $3.6 billion in public- and private-sector revenue, including $87 million in state and city taxes and 16,700 jobs in
Cirtwill said a gateway port in the northeastern
“One is they’re on the other side of the U.S. border, so they don’t have to deal with (border) delays.” The second thing is “they’re closer to major (U.S.) marketplaces,” said Cirtwill.
“With a world-class container facility at
While the Sears Island report suggests it could be a competitor to Canadian ports, Cirtwill said there’s enough container cargo projected to hit the eastern coast of North America to support terminals in the Strait of Canso, Sydney, Halifax and Saint John – and Sears Island.
Capt. Al Soppitt, president and chief executive officer of the Saint John Port Authority, said Monday that, while he’s interested in new ways to grow the port’s container business, he’s focused on sustaining and growing existing container traffic.
Soppitt said ports in Atlantic Canada and the northeastern
John Henshaw, executive director of the Maine Port Authority, said the state government supports attracting more container traffic. But construction on a new facility in
Under an agreement signed by state officials and industry and environmental groups,
Before a port on
“We’re going to have to do another feasibility study,” Henshaw said.