Richmond Marine Terminal debuts new mobile harbor crane
Leaders from the City of Richmond and The Port of Virginia signed a lease that enables the port to continue to its investment in and operation of Richmond Marine Terminal (RMT) through 2056. A new mobile harbor crane, the port’s most recent investment, was also unveiled at the event.
The 40-year lease, which Richmond City Council adopted last fall, cleared the way for the port to implement its strategy to reinvest in RMT, which is strategically located along the James River and I-95, and continue to recapture its potential. Moreover, the $4.2 million 350-ton crane is one of the first steps in the port’s effort to reinvest and modernize the 121-acre barge terminal. The crane will speed the loading and unloading of the container barge that calls RMT three times a week; the barge links RMT with The Port of Virginia’s container terminals in the Norfolk Harbor.
The crane was purchased with a grant from the federal government. Critical to the success of the grant was the Richmond Transportation Planning Organization (TPO), which supported the application and was the port’s partner through the entire process.
Though the lease and crane were the focal points of the ceremony, the port also announced another significant investment on hand: a new barge with 50% more capacity to carry containers in a single trip.
The barge service grew out of the America’s Marine Highway Program, a program administered by the US Maritime Administration (MARAD) that is focused on making use of the nation’s inland waterways. The barge service was also the result of an effort to reduce truck traffic on Interstate 64, reduce carbon emissions and to better utilize RMT, which lost its two last ocean carriers as a result of the recession of 2008-2009.
The lease signing and crane’s debut were held today at RMT at a ceremony that was co-sponsored by the city and the port. More than 75 people attended the event, including Aubrey L. Layne Jr., the Commonwealth’s secretary of transportation, representatives from the city’s leadership, its business community, local-and-state elected officials, the Richmond Transportation Planning Organization, MARAD, the Virginia Port Authority Board of Commissioners, RMT customers and members of the port community from throughout Richmond and Hampton Roads.