Press Release Article


Date: Sep 30, 2002
Press Release Number: 102-2002

The Port Authority today announced a major wharf expansion project at the Howland Hook Marine Terminal that will improve productivity and allow up to four 725-foot cargo ships to load or unload at the same time.

To further support new growth at Howland Hook, one of the East Coast’s maritime success stories, the Port Authority also announced that construction will begin in November on a rail link between Howland Hook and the nation’s rail freight system, providing the first direct connection between the Staten Island terminal, shippers and consumer markets throughout the continental United States. In addition, a new ship-to-rail transfer point will be built, providing faster cargo movement and making the terminal even more attractive to shippers exporting chemicals, scrap metal or other goods, or importing consumer items such as electronics equipment or clothing.

Port Authority Chairman Jack G. Sinagra said, “The Board\'s $350 million in investment in Howland Hook clearly shows its importance as a key maritime facility in the Port of New York and New Jersey. Our Port supports approximately 225,000 port-related jobs in New York and New Jersey and contributes to billions in economic activity throughout the region.”

Port Authority Vice Chairman Charles A. Gargano said, “Howland Hook is an important asset in a maritime port system that supports 87,443 port-related jobs in New York. These include not only maritime jobs, but also related jobs in law, finance, manufacturing and other fields. To sustain this momentum, we will continue to make key investments in the Staten Island terminal to provide state-of-the-art facilities, enhanced rail access and deeper channels.”

Staten Island Borough President James P. Molinaro said, “I thank Governor Pataki and the Port Authority for continuing to invest in Staten Island’s future as an economic success story. With their support, Howland Hook can continue to attract more shipping activity and allow us to compete successfully with other ports. This investment also means more jobs and revenue locally. At the same time, it helps to reduce reliance on trucks for commerce, which in turn will help us reduce truck traffic on our roads and resulting air pollution. This is a win-win situation all around.”

Port Authority Executive Director Joseph J. Seymour said, “Our $350 million investment strategy for Howland Hook is a critical part of the Port Authority’s overall $1.5 billion port redevelopment program that is deepening the harbor’s channels, expanding marine terminal capacity and improving landside transportation connections.

“An important part of our strategy is preparing for a new generation of large container ships,” Mr. Seymour said. “At Howland Hook, we are making provisions for
future berth deepening to accommodate these ships and the cranes and other equipment needed to serve them, to ensure that the terminal continues to compete successfully with
ports in other parts of the East Coast.”

To improve the terminal’s capacity to handle more ships, the Port Authority has awarded a $35 million contract to expand Howland Hook’s wharf to provide additional space for ships to dock. The contract, awarded to Granite Halmar Construction Co. of Mount Vernon, N.Y., calls for expanding and strengthening the terminal’s existing wharf, and installing crane rail systems.

The Howland Hook wharf extension project will extend the terminal’s wharf approximately 500 linear feet – 300 feet on the north side of the current berth and 200 feet to the south. The new wharf will be approximately 3,000 feet long and will be capable of accommodating up to four 725-foot ships.

Port Authority Port Commerce Director Richard M. Larrabee said, “On a peak day, as many as four ships with an average length of 725 feet call on the terminal. When this occurs, one ship must wait for berth space until another ship completes its cargo activity and departs. This adds costs to the shippers and causes inefficiencies at the terminal. This wharf extension project will improve the overall productivity of Howland Hook.”

The project also calls for strengthening a 945-foot portion of the existing wharf to allow for future berth deepening up to 50 feet to accommodate larger vessels and support the weight of four new electric post-Panamax cranes planned for the terminal.

Construction of the rail connection will link Howland Hook with two of the nation’s major freight carriers, Norfolk Southern and CSX. Cargo bound from Howland Hook, for example, will be carried on existing Staten Island Railroad tracks across the Arthur Kill. Freight trains will then follow a link to be constructed in Elizabeth, N.J. that will join the Chemical Coast Line, a major national freight line used by Norfolk Southern and CSX.

The Port Authority also will build a new ship-to-rail transfer terminal at Howland Hook on the former Procter and Gamble property purchased by the Port Authority in
2000. Construction will begin in 2003 and will be completed by the end of 2004.

Howland Hook is a 187-acre marine terminal in Staten Island. In 2001, the terminal handled nearly 300,000 international cargo containers.

The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey operates some of the busiest and most important transportation links in the region. They include John F. Kennedy International, Newark Liberty International, LaGuardia and Teterboro airports; the George Washington Bridge; the Lincoln and Holland tunnels; the three bridges between Staten Island and New Jersey; the PATH rapid-transit system; the 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 is financially self-supporting and receives no tax revenue from either state.

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