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Aug. 28 - Georgia Port Numbers Are Up in Brunswick and Savannah; New Inland Port Opens

By Jim Hackler, Coastal Empire News

August 28, 2018 - Georgia Ports are having a record summer and it plans to keep up with the additional demand with the opening of the Appalachian Regional Port (ARP) near Chatsworth, Ga. Gov. Nathan Deal, state officials and more than 350 business and civic leaders were on hand last week for the official opening of the new facility.

“The Appalachian Regional Port is a powerful new gateway to the Port of Savannah that extends the efficiencies of Georgia’s superior port operations to new markets,” Deal said. “It will also serve as an economic development magnet, drawing business and industry to the Southeast U.S.”

Located in Murray County, the new state-of-the-art facility will provide logistics solutions for customers in a four-state region and remove an estimated 50,000 trucks and 15 million truck miles from local highways every year.

“The ARP is part of our Network Georgia initiative that brings services from the coast to communities around the state,” said GPA Executive Director Griff Lynch in a press release. “The new inland terminal will provide the same, superior quality services our customers have come to rely on: congestion-free, easy access, expedited handling and reliability.”

Record Growth in Savannah and Brunswick

The Georgia Ports Authority moved 378,767 twenty-foot equivalent container units (TEUS) in July, an increase of 12.7 percent, or 42,668 TEUs, compared to the same month last year. It was the second busiest month on record for the Port of Savannah.

“July was an incredible start to our fiscal year, with double-digit growth across our container, breakbulk and dry bulk operations,” said Lynch.

In Fiscal Year 2018 (July 2017—June 2018), rail cargo at Garden City Terminal increased by 16 percent (60,000 containers) for a total of 435,000 intermodal rail lifts. July continued that trend, with the busiest month on record for intermodal cargo, at 41,070 container moves, for an increase of 20.8 percent (7,087 containers) compared to July 2017.

Since Fiscal Year 2016, the GPA has seen its container trade grow by nearly 16 percent, or an additional 560,000 TEUs. However, turn times for motor carriers and rail operations have not increased.

“Georgia has simply built a superior logistics solution and our customers and carriers are responding,” said GPA Board Chairman Jimmy Allgood. “We continue to deliver a congestion-free terminal operation, even with record growth.”

Allgood said GPA’s increasing trade has positive ripple effects throughout Georgia’s economy.

“Many jobs are being created in the logistics industry and beyond due to the growing business through Georgia’s ports,” Allgood said. “From 2014 to 2017, the University of Georgia found a 19 percent rise in jobs supported by the ports, or 70,000 additional positions, for a total of nearly 440,000 jobs supported by Georgia’s ports.”

Total GPA tonnage in July grew by 10.5 percent, or nearly 300,000 tons, for a total of 3.15 million tons. Breakbulk tonnage crossing all docks increased by 14.4 percent (33,494 tons) in July for a total of 265,891 tons of cargo. At East River Terminal in Brunswick, bulk cargo grew by 43 percent. Terminal operator Logistec moved an additional 29,670 tons last month, for a total of 98,483.

In roll-on/roll-off cargo, the GPA handled 53,419 units of autos and machinery, an increase of 5 percent, or 2,610 units, compared to July 2017. Colonel’s Island Terminal at the Port of Brunswick moved the majority of that Ro/Ro cargo, accounting for 50,850 units of the total.

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