Virginia's Expansion Underway
The first bundle of six rail-mounted gantry cranes (RMGs) arrived at Virginia International Gateway earlier this month. The cranes, plus another 80, mark the beginning of the centerpiece of the port's expansion, says John F. Reinhart, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority.
“This is the starting point where we can begin the process of recouping the $320 investment being made to expand capacity at Virginia International Gateway,” says Reinhart. In November 2016, the port finalized a $217 million contract with Konecranes to fill the RMG order. The contract is the largest one-time order for automated stacking cranes in industry history.
By 2020, the port will have increased the container capacity by 40 percent, or one million container units.
Over the next two years, the port will be receiving regular deliveries of the RMGs to Virginia International Gateway and Norfolk International Terminals. This first group of RMGs will go into service in April, and the terminal’s container stack yard expansion will go into service at intervals through November. In total, 26 new RMGs will be delivered to Virginia International Gateway and the remaining 60 will go to Norfolk International Terminals. The expansion at Virginia International Gateway is expected to be complete by spring 2019.
Construction on the $320 million Virginia International Gateway expansion got underway in February 2017. The work includes adding 13 new container stacks to the container stack yard – supported by 26 new RMGs – lengthening the berth, four new ship-to-shore container cranes, doubling the size of the rail operation and adding new lanes to the truck gate.
The Port of Virginia has processed 1.67 million TEUs thus far in fiscal year 2018, and increase of 4.4 percent when compared with the same seven-month period last year. The port set a new annual record for container cargo volume in 2017, having handled more than 2.84 million TEUs, a seven percent increase over the previous year’s total.