Kaien Island

Potential breakbulk, bulk cargo terminal being explored by SSA Marine, Port of Prince Rupert

Port, SSA Marine's Western Stevedoring sign feasibility assessment agreement on Wednesday

The product and cargo diversification continues for the Port of Prince Rupert.

As part of its Gateway 2020 development vision, which has the Prince Rupert Port Authority aiming at diversifying the products and cargo that flow through the port, the organization has taken another step forward toward that vision with a new feasibility assessment agreement with Western Stevedoring for the potential construction of a breakbulk and bulk import/export terminal on the south shore of Kaien Island.

The site for the development is 80 hectares and is identified to be a part of the Ridley Island Road, Rail and Utility Corridor and is situated beside CN’s mainline, outlines a press release from the port. The area is also home to smaller, existing bulk terminals.

Western Stevedoring is a wholly-owned subsidiary of SSA Marine, the world’s largest privately held marine and rail terminal operator.

“Ongoing cargo diversification is one of the highest priorities for the Port of Prince Rupert and the potential for the return of breakbulk and general cargoes capacity to the Port of Prince Rupert represents a clear response to growing market demand in western Canada,” Don Krusel, president and CEO of the Port of Prince Rupert said.

“We are pleased to be working with SSA Marine and Western Stevedoring, accomplished transportation service providers, whose extensive global operations make them an attractive partner.”

SSA Marine currently has operations in eight countries, including the U.S., New Zealand, Vietnam and South Africa.

The potential terminal is meant to complement the expanding Fairview Container Terminal, the release stated, by offering clients flexibility in shipping mode. The terminal could provide handling for things like breakbulk forest products, steel, project cargo, bulk specialty agricultural projects, bulk mineral concentrates and vehicles.

The release also states that the port has been requested by U.S., Canadian and regional shippers to return breakbulk service since it was significantly removed when the original terminal was converted to Fairview.

“The Port of Prince Rupert has established a global reputation for speed and reliability of trade, and a new breakbulk and bulk terminal would likewise benefit from key strengths such as the port’s safe harbour and proximity to Asian markets,” Brad Eshleman, president of Western Stevedoring.

“We are excited at the prospect of building on – and expanding – that success.”

The project would trigger an environmental assessment if the partners move past the feasibility stages of the terminal.