Multi-million JAXPORT development agreed

JAXPORT terminal ceremony SSA Conventional President Mark Knudsen (left) and JAXPORT CEO Eric Green shake hands during the agreement ceremony. Credit: JAXPORT

Jacksonville Port Authority’s (JAXPORT) board of directors have approved a 25-year agreement with terminal operator SSA Marine for the development and operation of a US$238.7m international container terminal at JAXPORT’s Blount Island Marine Terminal.

The facility, SSA Jacksonville International Gateway Terminal, is an expansion of SSA Marine’s current leasehold at Blount Island and, on completion of the Jacksonville Harbour Deepening project in 2023, will offer a vessel turning basin and deepwater berthing space of 47 feet to accommodate the larger container ships calling at JAXPORT from Asia with heavy loads.

“We are thrilled to partner with a major international terminal operator that is as dedicated as we are to contributing to the economic vitality of Northeast Florida,” said JAXPORT CEO Eric Green. “The significant investments SSA Marine has committed to this facility, accompanied by their unparalleled industry knowledge and experience, allows us to take full advantage of all of the opportunities the Jacksonville Harbor Deepening project creates for our port and our region.”

Substantial investment

The 25-year agreement comes with two five-year renewal options and includes multiple improvements to the terminal.

JAXPORT will spend US$109m in berth rehabilitation and upgrades which are already underway and will allow the terminal to simultaneously accommodate two post-Panamax vessels.

SSA Marine will contribute up to US$129.7m for the use of the terminal and facility upgrades, including US$28m for exclusive use of JAXPORT’s three new 100-gauge container cranes, with those funds going toward the cost of the deepening project.

It will also expand from 50 acres to approximately 80 acres of terminal operating space, with the option to grow up to 120 acres as space becomes available.

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