$270-Million Expansion Is Proposed For Port Of Portland

The Port of Portland, Ore., is gearing up for the coming turn-of-the-century by which time it is anticipated that the volume of general cargo in the port will triple.

The Port Commission recently accepted a master development plan devised by a 30- member Citizens Advisory Task Force. The initial phase of the plan was completed in December 1979. According to the results of extensive research, the volume of cargo is expected to triple by the year 2000 — up to 22.8 million tons from 6.5 million tons at present. This is an average yearly growth rate of 6.2 percent.

No major shifts in cargo types are expected, but containers, grain, steel, and autos are expected to have significant growth rates. Moderate growth is projected for general cargo, forest products, and liquid and dry bulks. Anticipated new commodities include coal and Midwest grain.

The projections are that 18 new berths will be needed, an average of one new berth a year for the next 18 years. The Citizens Advisory group recommended that current port terminals 1, 2, and 4 be renovated beginning in the next five years to provide maximum operational efficiency and responsiveness to changing technological innovations.

Other recommendations are for the port to utilize the most efficient methods and equipment for increasing terminal throughput; to reserve current waterfront land inventory for future development; and to pursue aggressively the acquisition of vacant waterfront land that is suitable for marine terminal development.

The cost of providing the facilities needed to handle the forecast cargo volume is estimated at $270 million. It is anticipated that it will be financed through revenue bonds and port activities. Due to an expected shortfall in the first five years of the plan, a general obligation bond measure may be required to help finance some of the general construction.

The plans for the existing terminals are: Improved Lumber and Barge Docks—The port's oldest facility, Terminal 1, is a general cargo facility. Terminal 1 is expected to continue its long record of productivity with the upgrading of existing docks and by filling in the slip berth. The low-level barge berth is to be lengthened, increasing its flexibility to handle ro/ro, pass/pass, and conventional breakbulk vessels. Accessibility to the warehouses will be improved, resulting in increased vessel productivity. Excel- lent direct quayside rail service and truck access will be maintained.

New Flexi Terminal — Terminal 2's reconstruction consists of a $21-million program resulting in a fully modern, multipurpose three-berth facility. It will effectively accommodate all current modes of ocean transportation: containers, ro/ro, pass/pass, breakbulk and neobulk, and reefer.

Twelve acres of new backup will be gained by the cleaning and filling of slip berths, while at the same time creating a foundation for new berths designed especially for the future. This rehabilitation will enhance the port's versatility in general cargo handling at this terminal which already provides direct quayside rail service and is located approximately one mile from the interstate highway system.

Expanded Utility Docks—Terminal 4 will become a fully modern eight-berth facility capable of efficiently handling grain, general cargo, neobulk, steel, containers, and automobiles.

It also will feature on-dock rail service as well as ro/ro and pass/pass capabilities.

Terminal 4 rehabilitation features a multiphased, 15-year reconstruction program that will first relocate the import/ export dry bulk to Terminal 5. Both Wheeler Bay and Slip No. 3 will then be filled, gaining 21 acres of backup land and new dock facing.

Expand Container, Coal, Grain, Autos — The port's newest marine terminals have been built in the Rivergate Industrial District in North Portland. Sufficient waterfront is available for an additional four 1,000-foot or five 750-foot berths in a 112- acre vacant parcel south of the existing Columbia Grain facility. These acres will be developed for grain, coal, and import/export dry bulk. At Terminal 6, backup facilities already in place include a 60,000-square-foot container freight station, a 200,000-squarefoot cargo distribution warehouse and ondock intermodal rail trackage. Nearly 300 acres in North Rivergate surrounding the existing Terminal 6 complex are reserved for container terminal development as well as automobile berths. An intermodal rail facility is being planned to supplement the existing rail-serviced berths.

The Berth 603 expansion program is targeted for a December 1981 completion date.

The project will add another 1,050 feet of berths and 17 acres of backup acreage. The $20-million expansion includes two new Hitachi 40-ton cranes and two additional Hitachi transtainers. Berth 603 will increase Terminal 6 facilities to include 2,850 feet of berths and 53 acres of backup facility serviced by a total of five gantry cranes and six transtainers.

Other stories from September 15, 1981 issue

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