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Rail News: Rail Industry Trends

Florida port takes first step toward more containerized traffic


The Manatee County Port Authority recently approved a $2.1 million bid from Spectrum Underground Inc. to launch the first phase of a Berth 12 dredging project at Port Manatee in Palmetto, Fla.

To be operational by early 2010, the new 1,584-foot-long berth is designed to accommodate containerized shipping.

Phase one of the dredging project calls for creating permanent underground five-foot-diameter tunnel features designed to enable hydraulic pipelines to deliver dredge material to a certified uplands spoil disposal site. The tunnel features will be constructed under CSX Transportation’s mainline at the port’s front gate and under U.S. Highway 41.

“This opens the door to advance Port Manatee’s future in containerized shipping,” said Executive Director David McDonald in a prepared statement.

Last month, the port signed a strategic alliance with the Panama Canal Authority to share information and foster joint marketing efforts. The Panama Canal is undergoing a $5.25 billion expansion that’s projected to conclude in 2014 and Port Manatee is the closest U.S. deepwater seaport to the canal, McDonald said.

Contact Progressive Railroading editorial staff.

More News from 6/26/2009