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Port of Vancouver Set for Big Boost in Container Handling Capacity

Photo courtesy Port of Vancouver

Port of Vancouver Set for Big Boost in Container Handling Capacity

Mike Schuler
Total Views: 3031
February 22, 2023

The Port of Vancouver is set for a big boost to its container handling capacity following a project to expand DP World’s Centerm Terminal.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority announced Tuesday that construction on the project is now complete.

Known as the Centerm Expansion Project, the project will result in the port’s container handling capacity to increase from 900,000 TEUs to 1.5 million TEUs per year—a 66% jump made possible by expanding the terminal’s footprint by only 15%.

Full capacity gains from the project are expected to be realized later this year.

The completed work includes expanding the terminal footprint to the west and east, reconfiguring and expanding the container yard, building state-of-art truck gates, expanding the intermodal yard, building a new operations facility, and marine habitat improvements.

“We’re incredibly proud of our work leading this award-winning terminal expansion, which adds to our proven track record of delivering top-tier sustainable infrastructure to support Canada’s growing trade,” said Cliff Stewart, vice president of infrastructure at the port authority, the federal agency mandated to enable Canada’s trade through the Port of Vancouver. “The expanded Centerm terminal is an important addition to the Port of Vancouver as we continue to work to deliver the container capacity Canadians and Canadian businesses need to thrive now and into the future.”

The project also comes with environmental benefits, including eliminating wait times for vehicles at train crossings (and thereby reducing greenhouse gas emissions), adding capacity for container ships to connect to electrical shore power, upgrading some yard cranes from diesel to electric, and building to LEED and Envision certification sustainability standards.

“The completion of the Centerm Expansion Project marks a new chapter in the 100-year history of our DP World operations in Vancouver,” said Maksim Mihic, chief executive and general manager, DP World (Canada) Inc. “By using new technologies and reconfiguring the terminal–we have been able to increase throughput capacity by 60% with only a 15% increase in the terminal footprint. This project is a great example of how we are innovating to create the sustainable trade infrastructure of tomorrow.”

Canada’s west coast marine container terminals are forecast to hit capacity by the mid- to late-2020s, following a decade of 5% average annual growth from 2011 to 2021, according to the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority.

“Trade through the Port of Vancouver is growing and we’re working to ensure infrastructure projects are designed and delivered in a way that protects the environment and benefits local communities while enhancing the safe movement of cargo through the region,” said Stewart.

Meanwhile, work is continuing on the Port of Vancouver’s South Shore Access Project, which will connect the Centerm terminal and other nearby terminals directly to Highway 1 and provide for future rail capacity improvements. Construction on that project is expected to be completed this coming Spring.

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