ExpressRail Staten Island ’ the ship-to-rail facility serving New York Container Terminal ’ completed a successful first year by moving more than 44,000 containers by rail and removing approximately 70,000 trucks from local roads including the Goethals Bridge.
The rail facility, which began service last June 28, already has exceeded 34,000 containers handled for this year, surpassing projections for the entire year. The Staten Island rail facility has the capacity to handle up to 100,000 containers a year.
ExpressRail Staten Island also saw the number of containers it handles monthly jump from 451 in July 2007 to more than 5,000 in June 2008.
Port Authority Chairman Anthony R. Coscia said, ‘Investing in on-dock rail terminals is a critical part of our strategy to maintain our port’s standing as the East Coast’s premier shipping destination. The success of the New York Container Terminal shows that our $600 million investment in ExpressRail is paying dividends by reducing congestion on our local roads and enabling the movement of essential goods in an efficient and environmentally sustainable way.’
Port Authority Executive Director Chris Ward said, ‘Putting cargo containers on trains means fewer trucks on the road, which is good news for drivers and good news for the environment. We’re pleased that the Staten Island facility has been a success, and we look forward to helping them continue to grow their rail business in the future.’
Jim Devine, president of New York Container Terminal, said, ‘We are extremely pleased that in its first year, our rail operation has exceeded not only ours but perhaps more importantly, our customer’s expectations, and we look forward to further growth in the future. We are thankful to both the Port Authority and New York City Economic Development Corporation for their help in bringing this important facility online, and we are particularly thankful to all the rail operators, Conrail, CSX and Norfolk Southern, for their tremendous support in making this facility a success.’
The $26 million ExpressRail Staten Island facility was built on a 39-acre parcel on the former Procter & Gamble site, which was purchased by the Port Authority in December 2000.
The Staten Island rail facility consists of five tracks that are linked to the reactivated Staten Island Railroad. Containers are loaded onto rail cars and transported via the Staten Island Railroad to the Conrail Main Line in Elizabeth, NJ, which connects to the nation’s extensive rail freight network.
The rail facility required the reactivation of the Staten Island Railroad. It also required the rehabilitation of the Arthur Kill Lift Bridge and the construction of a rail link from the bridge to the Chemical Coast Line to allow cargo trains to have access to the national rail freight network.
In 2007, ExpressRail broke several records for container volume, handling 5.7% more containers than in 2006. The total volume handled by ExpressRail removed more than half a million trucks from state and local roads.
The ExpressRail terminals handled 358,043 cargo containers in 2007, an increase of approximately 20,000 over the previous record of 338,882 in 2006. In the past seven years, the number of containers transported by rail from the Port of New York and New Jersey more than doubled.