Date: Sep 20, 2007
Press Release Number: 78-2007
The Port Authority will acquire a key parcel of property on the former Military Ocean Terminal at Bayonne for maritime terminal use to handle the continuing growth and expansion in activity in the Port of New York and New Jersey.
Under an agreement approved today by the Board of Commissioners, the Port Authority will pay $50.5 million to the Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority to acquire a 153-acre parcel to add to the approximately 3,000 acres it controls in the port. Cargo volumes have doubled in the past 10 years and they are expected to double again in the next 10 years. Last year, the port handled more than $149 billion in cargo.
The Port Authority intends to use the Military Ocean Terminal property for future auto marine terminal and other maritime-related uses. This purchase will allow existing acres in the port to be freed up to handle cargo where current capacity may not keep pace with growth in containers, autos or bulk commodities.
Port Authority Port Commerce Director Richard M. Larrabee said, “In the next 10 years, we expect our already strong cargo volumes to double, yet we have limited land on which to expand our facilities to accommodate this growth. This parcel is a gem in the New York harbor that will allow us to begin to address the critical issues we face in order to maintain our position as the leading East Coast destination for international shippers.”
Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority Chairman Howard Fitch said, “After years of planning and preparation, we are now entering a new era of building and growth at the peninsula. This is a huge step forward for Bayonne. Along with the upcoming groundbreaking on construction at Bayonne Bay, the Port Authority agreement heralds a new stage of development progress for the city.”
Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority Director Nancy A. Kist said, “This is an ideal use of the port property that will create thousands of jobs while complementing the mixed-use waterfront development the city has envisioned for the peninsula.”
Bayonne Mayor Joseph V. Doria, Jr., said, “This prospective deal is terrific for the
people of Bayonne because it achieves our primary goals of generating new tax revenues, creating new jobs and doing so in a way that does not adversely affect our quality of life.”
The Port Authority estimates that between 4,000 and 10,000 new direct and indirect jobs in the region will result in the future from the addition of the Military Ocean Terminal site to the Port Authority’s portfolio of marine terminal assets.
In 2006, containerized cargo volumes in the port rose nearly 8 percent to a new record high, led by continued growth in trade with the Far East, North Europe and Southeast Asia. The dollar value of all cargo moving through the port in 2006 exceeded $149 billion for the first time, up 13 percent from the previous year.
To address the growth, the Port Authority plans to make $2 billion in seaport investments in the next 10 years, including deeper port channels, an improved roadway network, and new and enhanced on-dock rail terminals.
The U.S. Army previously operated the 437-acre Military Ocean Terminal site as a drydock and supply base. The Base Realignment and Closure Commission designated the military facility for closure in 1995 and it was subsequently transferred to the City of Bayonne for future redevelopment. The city’s redevelopment plans include a parcel that is dedicated to maritime uses.
The Port Authority has been in discussions with the City of Bayonne and the Bayonne Local Redevelopment Authority on and off since 1996 to explore the possibility of an agreement regarding use of a portion of the Military Ocean Terminal for port-related purposes.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates many of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; AirTrain JFK and AirTrain Newark; the George Washington Bridge and Bus Station; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH (Port Authority Trans-Hudson) rapid-transit system; the Port Authority-Downtown Manhattan Heliport; Port Newark; the Elizabeth-Port Authority Marine Terminal; the Howland Hook Marine Terminal on Staten Island; the Brooklyn Piers/Red Hook Container Terminal; and the Port Authority Bus Terminal in midtown Manhattan. The agency also owns the 16-acre World Trade Center site in Lower Manhattan.
The Port Authority is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.