Port of Long Beach to close new deal with OOCL
January 23, 2012 - LM Editorial
The Port of Long Beach has reached a tentative agreement on a 40-year, $4.6 billion lease with Orient Overseas Container Line (OOCL) for the Middle Harbor property, in what would be the largest deal of its kind for any U.S. seaport, Port of Long Beach Executive Director J. Christopher Lytle announced.
The agreement will go to the Long Beach Board of Harbor Commissioners’ Finance and Administration Committee today for review.
Meanwhile, the lease has been agreed to in principle by Hong Kong-based OOCL and its U.S. subsidiaries OOCL, LLC and Long Beach Container Terminal (LBCT).
The Port is investing $1.2 billion to develop the new 300-acre-plus Middle Harbor terminal, while OOCL and LBCT will invest approximately $500 million in the latest cargo-handling equipment.
According to Anne Landstrom, principal advisor for the port consultancy, Moffatt & Nichol, this represents a trend.
“Additional infrastructure improvements are being made to accommodate an expected increase in U.S. exports as well as inbound cargo,” she told LM. “This is particularly true of agricultural products.”
The lease would secure a tenant for the Middle Harbor Redevelopment Project, which combines Pier F and E into one state-of-the-art container terminal. LBCT has occupied Pier F since 1986 and will operate the Middle Harbor Terminal.
The new terminal will effectively double the existing capacity by utilizing the most advanced cargo-handling technology in the world. It will also be the greenest terminal in North America, cutting air pollution in half through the use of more on-dock rail, electrified cargo handling equipment and shore power, which allows vessels to draw electricity from a landside utility when docked rather than diesel-powered auxiliary engines.
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