The Massachusetts Port Authority (Massport) reports significant increases in container cargo handled at Conley Terminal in 2005. Total container tonnage climbed eight percent while the number of cargo containers, expressed as TEU (twenty-foot equivalent units) increased by nearly eight percent. See the table below:

Over the last few years, we have seen a steady rise in the amount of cargo handled in Boston,’ said Mike Leone, Massport’s Director of the Port. ‘We expect that to continue, and have taken aggressive steps to meet that demand. Massport has begun infrastructural improvements at Conley Terminal as well as facilitated the development of support services including warehousing, storage and transloading centers at a nearby site.’

At Conley Terminal, the first phase of a $25 million capacity enhancement project was completed in 2005. The second phase is now underway, with completion of the entire project scheduled for December 2006. This project will increase Conley Terminal’s cargo handling capacity by nearly 50% and involves realigning the yard to optimize efficiencies, repaving to allow for greater container stacking, the purchase of a new fleet of rubber tire gantry cranes and repositioning the chassis pool and maintenance and repair functions.

In 2005, Massport also announced plans for the development of an intermodal cargo and warehousing operation at one of Boston Harbor’s last remaining deep water sites. A state-of-the art logistics and bulk/break facility will be developed privately on approximately 30-acres of Massport’s Marine Terminal (MMT), also known as the North Jetty.

Marine Terminal Development LLC will develop three warehouse buildings at MMT totaling 470,400 square feet to house companies involved in freight forwarding, logistics, supply chain management, seafood processing and cold storage. Another 6.3 acres behind the North Jetty dock will be used to store and distribute waterborne bulk commodities such as cement, salt, and forest products.

Maintenance dredging in Boston Harbor will soon be underway, as Federal funding for Boston Harbor’s Maintenance Dredging Project received approval in 2005. The project is designed to restore Boston Harbor’s channels to a depth of 40’ by removing silt that accumulated over the past several years. The dredging is scheduled to begin in the spring/summer of 2006 and will include dredging of the Main Ship Channel upstream of Spectacle Island as well as the upper Reserved Channel, the approach to the Navy Dry Dock, and a portion of the Chelsea River in Boston Harbor. In 1999, Boston Harbor’s main shipping channels were deepened to 40’ and Conley Terminal’s berths were dredged to 45’to accommodate deep draft vessels sailing from Europe and Asia.