Prince Rupert Container Terminal Opening New World of Opportunities
Prince Rupert, British Columbia – The grand opening today of the Prince Rupert Fairview Container Terminal is creating a new high-speed, congestion-free trade corridor between Asia and North America. This hails a new era for Prince Rupert, a major milestone in the gateway initiatives of Canada and British Columbia, and a wave of new business opportunities for CN Rail and Maher Terminals.
“Our stars have aligned,” says Prince Rupert Port Authority President & CEO Don Krusel, noting the convergence of the private-public partnership to finance and complete the first dedicated intermodal container terminal in North America on schedule and on budget. “Our timing couldn’t have been better to bring on stream this high-performing container terminal to anchor a new express trade corridor. We will be able to offer both Asian and North American shippers unparalleled reliability, efficiency and speed in moving their products through our port.”
The Cdn $170 million terminal project, with a design capacity of 500,000 TEUs (20-foot equivalent units) has been funded by five partners:
* Maher Terminals, $60 million, including the three super-post panamax cranes
* Government of Canada: Western Economic Diversification Canada, $30 million
* Province of British Columbia, $30 million
* CN Rail, $25 million towards the terminal's rail-related infrastructure
* Prince Rupert Port Authority, $25 million
“Fifty years ago, Canada opened up Atlantic trade to North America with investments in the St Lawrence Seaway. Today, we are beginning to see investments and even greater opportunity as we open up trade corridors linking the growing Asian economies with North America through Canada’s Pacific Gateway,” says British Columbia Premier Gordon Campbell. “The Port of Prince Rupert is the closest port to the fastest growing economies in the world. This single expansion will create thousands of jobs in this region alone, and shift the focus of North American economies to the Pacific. I want to thank all the partners involved in this project for showing tremendous leadership and vision for our province and all of Canada.”
“This new terminal represents yet another step in building a world–class transportation system connecting North America to Asia,” says the Honourable David Emerson, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Pacific Gateway and the Vancouver-Whistler Olympics. “It will open extraordinary opportunities for Canadian business at home and abroad.”
"The Prince Rupert Port expansion will change the economic landscape of this region and our nation as we build stronger trade connections between Canada and Asia," says the Honourable Rona Ambrose, President of the Queen’s Privy Council, Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs and Minister of Western Economic Diversification. “Canada’s New Government is a proud partner and financial supporter of this project.”
President Hunter Harrison of CN, which owns and operates the northern mainline from Prince Rupert to Winnipeg, says CN appreciated the unique opportunity to work with the Port of Prince Rupert and Maher Terminals to design and construct the terminal from the ground up.
“We strongly believed in the Port of Prince Rupert’s vision from the outset and, as a result of our partnership and involvement in the terminal planning process, CN’s congestion-free mainline is integrated seamlessly into an ultra-modern, high-capacity container facility. This new injection of meaningful port-rail-terminal capacity into the global supply chain will offer shippers the fastest, most efficient and most cost-effective routing for Asian traffic destined to and from the interior of North America.”
CN is also investing heavily in its western Canadian network, which will benefit the entire Pacific gateway, adds Mr. Harrison. These improvements include upgrades to its rail traffic control system west of Prince George and extended sidings that will result in a double track system from Prince Rupert to Memphis with the capacity to handle the four million TEUs that the Port of Prince Rupert is projecting to handle by 2015. CN has upgraded tunnel and bridge, built new intermodal terminals in Prince George and Edmonton and acquired 50 new state-of-the-art locomotives specifically to serve Prince Rupert.
Strategically situated on the direct great circle route from Asia, Prince Rupert is more than a day’s sailing time closer to Asia than Vancouver and Seattle and nearly three days closer than LA/Long Beach. The Port of Prince Rupert has the deepest natural harbour in North America and the safest West Coast harbour with extensive capacity to expand. Prince Rupert is connected to the fastest and most effective rail line across the Rockies, which also has significant capacity available to accommodate Prince Rupert’s growth. The Port is anchoring a high-speed ‘Express Gateway’ that will result in containers shipped from Asia arriving at their North American mid west destinations faster than through other North American ports. The Port is building upon Prince Rupert’s strategic advantages to achieve container capacity of at least 4 million TEUs by 2015, which is aligned with Asia-Pacific Gateway & Corridor Initiative targets. New cruise ship facilities and a maturing cruise ship operation are also opening new opportunities to develop and grow Prince Rupert into a premier cruise port on the west coast of North America.