The Port of New Bedford will add another base of operations and terminal logistics facility to support offshore wind projects off Massachusetts and the northeastern coast seaboard.
The former Sprague/Eversource site was selected for its proximity to offshore wind blocks located approximately 15 miles south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket islands. The site will undergo redevelopment over the next year and be renamed the New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal. The terminal, slated to open in March 2023, will provide storage and laydown yards for equipment and materials, berth facilities for tug and barge operations, and host crew transfer vessel (CTV) and service operation vessel (SOV) support services. It will create new office space for project teams and a marine coordination center for technicians involved in offshore wind projects.
Foss is partnering with key local investors of New Bedford’s Cannon Street Holdings LLC (CSH) to develop the 30-acre site. Andrew Saunders, local commercial offshore marine industry attorney with Cannon Street Holdings, will serve as President of the New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal.
“Today marks a big day for the Port of New Bedford and the City as a whole,” said Saunders. “The repurposing of this facility to support offshore wind has been a vision for many and it is great to see this project now begin to materialize”. “This day was the result of a lot of support from the many key local and state government stakeholders as well as industry stakeholders and we would not have gotten to this point without this support. Both Sprague and Eversource also helped greatly in bringing this day to reality. Thank you to all involved”.
“The New Bedford Foss Marine Terminal is perfectly situated to support offshore wind projects on the East Coast,” said Jason Childs, President and CEO of Saltchuk Marine. “We appreciate the vision of the City and Port of New Bedford and the vital role they are playing in making this project a success,“ added Childs.
New Bedford Mayor Jon Mitchell lauded the announcement. “We are thrilled to welcome Foss to the Port of New Bedford. The new terminal will solidify the Port’s status as the East Coast’s leader in offshore wind, complement our fishing industry, and create opportunities for our residents,” Mayor Mitchell said. “I congratulate Andrew Saunders and Foss’s parent, Saltchuk Marine, for their skillful and persistent effort to close this important deal.”
“Congratulations to Andrew, John and Lou at CSH and Foss for acquiring the Sprague and Eversource sites and building a marine terminal there to support the offshore wind companies. Today’s announcement of the acquisition for a new marine terminal brings New Bedford another step closer to realizing the economic and environmental benefits of the offshore wind industry and the city’s role within it. This is an exciting day for New Bedford and the SouthCoast region, and the role our city will continue to play in offshore wind development and renewable energy.” said local State representative Antonio F.D. Cabral (D – New Bedford) whose district includes the property.
“Re-dedication of this local port facility in New Bedford to provide support services for the coming Massachusetts wind renewable industry will provide jobs and economic growth while complementing the existing fishing, shipping and recreational maritime users in the harbor”, said local Representative Bill Straus (D-Mattapoisett), whose district includes both port communities of New Bedford and Fairhaven. Rep. Straus is the House Chair of the legislature’s Transportation Committee.
“Congratulations to Foss and the City of New Bedford for continuing to build on the momentum that the emerging offshore wind industry is gaining in our community. This project is another opportunity to spur economic development in the region,” said local Representative Christopher Hendricks (D-11th Bristol)
“The people of New Bedford should be very excited that a private company has decided to make such a huge investment in our community. This type of private investment in our city should be example of how important offshore wind will be to our community over the next generations. Very proud that a native of New Bedford was able to put this all together. Hats off to Andrew and the team at Saltchuk.” said local State Representative Christopher Markey (D-Dartmouth) of the 9th Bristol District which includes New Bedford.
“Foss’s investment in New Bedford is a great example of how the emerging offshore wind industry, led by the Vineyard Wind 1 project, can have a meaningful impact on the community,” said Vineyard Wind CEO Klaus Moeller. “The agreement will not only expand Foss’s operations in Massachusetts, but also create opportunities for local residents. We’re proud to work with Foss and look forward to the positive effect their presence will have in the City of New Bedford.”
“We are happy that we supported Foss in its development of this terminal as we believe that this is an example of creating added value in the development of offshore wind along the Northeast US coastline. It shows that cooperation, long term relationships and trust between companies and people creates opportunities for multiple parties and leads to local job creation”, said Jan Klaassen, director of DEME Offshore US.
The seller, Sprague Massachusetts Properties, is wholly owned by Axel Johnson Inc. which is a private operating company with a mission to invest in and help grow great industry-leading businesses over the long term. Until mid-2021, Axel Johnson was the majority owner of Sprague Operating Resources with Sprague utilizing the New Bedford facility as a petroleum marketing location. In the near-term, Sprague will continue to service the New Bedford petroleum market from its nearby Providence, Rhode Island distribution terminals via truck.
“We’re proud of our continued partnership with the City of New Bedford and the work that has already gone into the waterfront site over the past several years,” said Eversource Executive Vice President for Corporate Relations and Sustainability Jim Hunt. “Redeveloping the property will bring environmentally responsible economic development opportunities to the area as our region becomes a leader for offshore wind, which aligns with our work creating a more sustainable future.”
A groundbreaking ceremony will be held later this year, in conjunction with the One SouthCoast Chamber of Commerce.