Progressive Railroading

Newsletter Sign Up
Stay updated on news, articles and information for the rail industry

All fields are required.


Rail News Home Intermodal


Rail News: Intermodal

Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor's cargo growth capped off 'landmark' year in 2017

In 2017, the port handled 2.8 million tons of cargo.
Photo – Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor

The Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor handled an 8 percent increase in cargo shipments in 2017, port officials announced today.

Last year represented a "landmark" year for actions taken to accommodate future growth. Those steps included doubling the size of its bulk terminal, attracting a nationally known stevedore, handling its most valuable cargo ever and announcing a $20 million expansion, port officials said in a press release.

"We had a strong year in part because our world-class companies continue to drive new business through our port," said Port Director Ian Hirt. "The continued growth of general cargo shipments managed by our partners at Federal Marine Terminals (FMT), the addition of Metro Ports taking over our bulk cargo operations and our strong labor force are all critical elements in this port's success."

In 2017, the port handled 2.8 million tons of cargo, the highest four-year total in the port's history and a 27 percent increase over the previous four-year period. Cargoes contributing to that growth included limestone, steel-related products and heavy lift/project cargoes, such as refinery tanks, laboratory equipment and windmill components.

The most valuable shipment to cross the port's dock was called ICARUS, the world's largest liquid argon particle hunter, port officials said. FMT unloaded ICARUS from an ocean vessel in July 2017.

The expansion plan can proceed in part because of a $9.85 million grant awarded last year by the U.S. Department of Transportation. The project includes construction of two rail yards, a new shipping berth, a truck marshaling yard, a 1,200-foot dock expansion and a new bulk cargo terminal with multimodal connections for handling transfers between ships, barges, rail cars and trucks.

"This expansion will allow our current companies to continue to grow and help us attract new business for our port and the northwest Indiana economy," Hirt said.
Norfolk Southern Railway and Indiana Harbor Belt Railroad are among the port's service providers.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 3/8/2018