2021 March 29 13:18
Community leaders joined the workforce at Broward County’s Port Everglades today to commission three new Super Post-Panamax gantry cranes during a live-streamed ribbon cutting ceremony available to re-watch at https://youtu.be/I4NwC8j7jpg (ribbon-cutting ceremony starts at 31:36).
The new cranes are the largest of their kind in the world at 175-feet (53 meters) and valued at $13.8 million each. They are unique because of the Port’s proximity to the airport. Each crane has the ability to handle containers stacked eight high from a ship’s deck and reach 22 across. Port Everglades' existing seven gantry cranes in the Southport area, where most of the containerized cargo operations occur, are only 151-feet high and limited to containers stacked six high and can reach 16 across.
“These cranes symbolize an historic transformation taking place at Port Everglades that is changing the landscape of our community. We are adding new cargo berths, deepening and widening our waterways, expanding our cargo and rail capacity all while paying close attention to the needs of our fragile environment,” said Port Everglades Chief Executive and Port Director. “What is also special about this day, is the way that the community has turned out to support our investments at Port Everglades. The individuals cutting the ribbon to commission our new cranes represent a cross-section of our customer base, governmental leaders and the community where we live, work and play.”
Participants in the crane commissioning ceremony included representatives from:
• Broward County Commission
• Florida Department of Transportation, which helped fund the new cranes
• Mayor of the City of Hollywood, where the cranes are located
• Container terminal operators Crowley, Florida International Terminals, Port Everglades Terminals LLC, and Sun Terminals (King Ocean)
• Labor representatives
• U. S. Coast Guard
• U.S. Customs and Border Protection
• Port Everglades Association
• Greater Fort Lauderdale Alliance
• Port Everglades Action Team
In addition to the live ceremony, well-wishers also sent congratulatory videos to the Port that were part of the pre-show video montage.
Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co., Ltd. Inc. (ZPMC) designed and manufactured the cranes as special “low-profile” models that extend out rather than up to avoid the flight path restrictions of Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL), which is less than two miles away. They are reportedly the largest low-profile container gantry cranes ever manufactured.
Reach & Lift: 22 Containers Wide, 8 Containers High on Deck
Backreach: 35 Feet/10.6 Meters with Boom Fully Extended
Capacity: 65 LT/66 MT (Long Tons = 2,240 pounds)
In addition to acquiring the new cranes, the existing low-profile Post-Panamax gantry cranes in Southport will be upgraded to a lift capacity of 65 tons from the current 46.5 tons that add the capability to perform twin-picks (lifting two containers at a time).
With the cargo terminals proximity to a sensitive marine environment, all the cranes are fitted with lighting that reduces the impact on nearby nesting sea turtles through lower light levels and limiting the amount of lights that move beyond the work area.
The new cranes are part of the largest expansion project in the Port’s history, which includes lengthening the Southport Turning Notch from 900 feet (274 meters) to 2,400 feet (731.5 meters) to allow for up to five new cargo berths, which will add approximately 730,000 TEUs* to the Port’s capacity. Construction for the $471 million project is ongoing and expected to be complete by late 2022. The project is anticipated to support an estimated 3,045 construction jobs and 5,529 direct, induced and indirect local/regional jobs, according to a study produced by nationally recognized maritime research firm Martin Associates.
Port Everglades is also working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deepen the Port’s navigation channels from 42 feet to 48-50 feet and to widen narrower sections of the channel for safer vessel passage. The Port received a "New Start" designation in 2020, and anticipates the deepening and widening project to commence in 2023.
About Port Everglades
As one of Florida’s leading economic powerhouses, Broward County’s Port Everglades is the gateway for international trade and cruise vacations. Consistently ranked among the top three busiest cruise ports in the world, Port Everglades is also one of the nation’s leading container ports and South Florida’s main seaport for receiving petroleum products including gasoline, jet fuel and alternative fuels. The Port Everglades Department is a self-supporting Enterprise Fund of Broward County, Florida government with operating revenues of almost $145.6 million in Fiscal Year 2020 (October 1, 2019 through September 30, 2020). It does not rely on local tax dollars for operations. The total value of economic activity related to Port Everglades is nearly $32 billion. More than 219,000 Florida jobs are impacted by the Port, including some 13,000 people who work for companies that provide direct services to Port Everglades.
The COVID-19 pandemic’s effects on the cruise industry are part of a larger struggle facing the entire travel industry, which ended 2020 with $1.1 trillion in losses, a 42 percent drop from 2019.