LOUISIANA GOVERNOR AIMS TO RESTORE FUNDS FOR NEW PORT NOLA TERMINAL
The Port of New Orleans is looking to the governor of Louisiana to help restore $4 million in state funding that would go toward early work on its proposed $1.5 billion container terminal after legislators unexpectedly cut the funding from the state’s most recent budget. The port plans to ask an upcoming session of a state senate and house joint budget committee to restore the funding.
TENTATIVE DEAL REACHED IN WEST COAST LABOUR NEGOTIATIONS
The Pacific Maritime Association and the International Longshore and Warehouse Union have announced a tentative agreement in West Coat labour negotiations, ending more than a year uncertainty that has had major impacts on the U.S. container trade. The new six-year contract covers workers at all 29 West Coast ports. Details of the agreement have not yet been released and both sides still need to ratify the new contract before it becomes official. A joint statement from the ILWU and PMA said the deal was reached with assistance from Acting U.S. Secretary of Labor Julie Su, who joined the negotiations in San Francisco. The collective bargaining agreement covers more than 22,000 longshore workers at container terminals operated by PMA members up and down the U.S. West Coast. Although negotiations made initial progress, tensions heightened this spring resulting in minor disruptions at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. The situation reached a critical point earlier this month when several West Coast container terminals experienced complete shutdowns.
CHASSIS PROVIDERS REHABBING FLEETS AS COSTS FOR NEW UNITS REMAIN ELEVATED
Chassis providers in the United States are using the current lull in import volume and international intermodal traffic to fix the oldest, least-reliable equipment in their fleets in a massive undertaking that will take many years. Although lessors refurbished some chassis over the last three years, overwhelming demand kept many units in operation day after day, week after week, leaving little time to take equipment out of service for rehabilitation. Now, with US imports down by double-digit percentages in the first five months of May, chassis lessors are taking the opportunity to overhaul their fleets.
NORFOLK SOUTHERN GETS $5 MILLION GRANT TO IMPROVE DETROIT INTERMODAL RAMP
The state of Michigan will contribute $5 million toward improvements at Norfolk Southern Railway’s Detroit intermodal facility that will allow the Class I railroad to consolidate its auto parts business and make accessing the site easier for drayage drivers. NS was the largest single grantee under the state’s 2023 Rail Enhancement Grant program, which awarded $19 million in total. $5 million grant will go toward the Detroit Intermodal Freight Terminal (DIFT) project, which is expected to cost $40 million overall.
Hungry Domestic Market Driving US Southeast Cold Storage Development
Rapid population growth and shifting sourcing is spurring the construction of nearly 2 million square feet of refrigerated storage and distribution facilities around major US Southeast ports from Norfolk to Jacksonville. The 1.9 million square feet of cold warehousing currently under construction in the Southeast represents 0.8% of the 234.6 million square feet of existing cold storage in the US and 43% of the 4.4 million square feet currently under construction across the country, according to industrial real estate developer CBRE. Another 3.2 million square feet of cold storage has already been proposed in the Southeast.