The Port of Morehead City’s new 177,000-square foot warehouse officially opened for business with a ribbon-cutting ceremony Oct. 24.

Carl J. Stewart Jr., chairman of the NC State Ports Authority Board of Directors, served as master of ceremonies, and Newport Mayor Derryl Garner, a member of the Board of Directors since 2002, was keynote speaker.

Also on hand were state Sen. Jean Preston, Ports Authority CEO Tom Eagar, Rex Edwards, director of business development and port operations at the Port of Morehead City, and Jeff Sheehan, senior vice president of Duke Realty Group. Duke Realty built the warehouse under a leaseback arrangement with the Ports Authority.

The new warehouse is designed to the highest specifications for the highest-value commodities: paper, steel and lumber. A load of fencing lumber has already been handled through it, and a load of lumber arriving represents new business to the Port, made possible by this new warehouse.

The Port of Morehead City serves as a gateway to world markets for North Carolina business and industry. Products handled include phosphate fertilizers exported by PCS Phosphate of Aurora, lumber for construction and retail sale, natural rubber used for tire manufacturing at the Bridgestone Firestone plant in Wilson and the Goodyear plant in Fayetteville, scrap metal for the Nucor Steel plant in Hertford County, colemanite used in fiberglass, and military equipment to support our national defense efforts.