The Port of Virginia will add 25 hybrid shuttle carriers to support its capacity expansion project at Norfolk International Terminals (NIT), helping improve productivity and sustainability efforts at the port, officials said today.
The shuttle carriers play a key role in NIT's conversion from using straddle carriers to rail-mounted gantry cranes (RMGs). The conversion allows for higher container-stack density, making it easier for the port to handle the larger container vessels calling Virginia, port officials said. Because they are hybrids, the shuttles will help cut fuel consumption, reduce emissions, and improve the overall sustainability of the port's operations.
The hybrid shuttle carriers—supplied by Kalmar, part of Cargotec Corp.—will cost $23 million and are expected to be delivered by July 2020, officials also said.
"These shuttle carriers are another step in the evolution of NIT and of the growing capabilities at The Port of Virginia," John Reinhart, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority, said in a statement announcing the purchase.
The NIT capacity expansion project is progressing according to schedule, officials added. There are 18 new stacks served by 36 new RMGs already in service. Work on the next phase of stack-yard construction is underway, with the next group of RMGs scheduled for delivery in January 2020. When the project is complete, the terminal's annual container capacity will have been expanded by 400,000 units, or 46%, officials said.