Benchmark Developments at the Port

MTC cold storage facility rises

Steel is rising at one edge of the Port of Mobile, while it’s coming down in just as orderly a manner at another edge.

On the rising side, the structure for MTC Logistics’ $61 million refrigerated cargo facility is taking shape. On the waterfront, two older cranes — now displaced by bigger and better cranes — are being carefully dismantled.

MTC’s refrigerated facility, featured in Business Alabama’s March cover story, is the newest in a series of improvements for the Alabama State Port Authority’s container cargo facilities.

“This needed facility is poised to serve the pent-up-demand of both our import and export refrigerated cargo shippers,” says Jimmy Lyons, director and chief executive officer for the Alabama State Port Authority.

Just outside the gates of the port’s container facilities, operated by ATM Terminals, and with direct access to Interstate 10, the new refrigerated plant will provide services including blast freezing, port drayage and LTL consolidation. MTC will expand the seaport’s blast freeze capability by accommodating 30 truckloads per day and providing 40,000 racked pallet positions of storage.

- Sponsor -

“We are excited to see our new International Distribution Center take shape,” says Andy Janson, president of MTC Logistics. “The feedback from the processors in the Southeast and our international import customers has been extremely positive.  Mostly we hear, ‘Hurry up and open!’ The COVID-19 challenges our country has been facing have magnified our essential place in the temperature-controlled supply-chain. We look forward to providing in Alabama a new option for the Southeast.”

Outdated cranes being dismantled

Meanwhile, on the waterfront, two cranes are being dismantled at the Pier 2 terminal.

“These cranes are past their useful life, and our Gottwald Mobile Harbor crane can easily serve the cargo needs of our shippers utilizing Pier 2,” says Lyons.

The two cranes were acquired, used, by the Port in 2006 to serve its rapidly growing containerized cargo business at Pier 2, while the new APM Terminals Mobile container terminal was being constructed.

When the new container terminal opened in 2008, the two PACECO cranes continued to serve general cargo ships that regularly call at Pier 2. But obsolete technology and escalating maintenance costs led to the Port’s decision to dismantle the familiar waterfront objects.

Combined, the cranes include about 1.9 million pounds of steel, which will be recycled by the regional steel mills. G.A. West, of Creola, won the competitive bid to remove the structures. Cowles, Murphy and Glover, of Mobile, is providing engineering support.

The crane removal project is expected to be complete by the end of May.

The latest Alabama business news delivered to your inbox