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SEATTLE: July 10, 2019. Members of the Northwest Seaport Alliance (NWSA), including port representatives of Seattle and Tacoma and handler SSA Terminals, have begun the modernization of Seattle’s marine Terminal 5 to accommodate larger containerships.

First constructed in 1999, terminal operations were suspended in 2014 while the Port of Seattle found a suitable tenant to modernise the facility for handling two 18,000 TEU containerships simultaneously. Currently 14,000 TEU vessels regularly call at terminals in the North and South harbours.

NWSA estimates Terminal 5 will produce 6,600 new direct jobs and more than US$2 billion in annual business activity. The members have pledged US$340 million in construction funds with private partner SSA Terminals contributing an additional US$160 million towards the project.

Seattle Terminal 5“As a local terminal operator in Seattle for the past 50 years, SSA Terminals is proud to be part of making Terminal 5 a modern asset in this harbour. We see this investment as part of a long-term growth strategy and look forward to its development,” said SSA Terminals COO Ed DeNike.

The 185-acre facility is expected to open in two phases, with one major berth ready to handle container cargo in the Spring of 2021 and the other berth ready by 2023.

“Four years ago this August, our two ports announced the joining of our operations in order to better compete on a global scale,” said Clare Petrich, Port of Tacoma commission president and co-chair of the NWSA. “Today is proof that we made the right decision as our efforts here at Terminal 5 provide us new opportunities for cooperation and the creation of family-wage jobs,”

Port of Seattle commission president and NWSA co-chair Stephanie Bowman added: “Today we begin the modernization of Terminal 5, the best container handling terminal in the Pacific Northwest. When complete, it will be a cornerstone of our region’s economic activity for decades to come.”

In April this year Tacoma and Seattle port commissioners approved a lease agreement for Terminal 5 with SSA Marine and Terminal Investment Limited, which is associated with the Mediterranean Shipping Company (MSC). The 2M Alliance of Maersk and MSC have agreed to make Terminal 5 port calls.

NWSA is a marine cargo operating partnership of the ports of Seattle and Tacoma whose combined volume makes it the fourth-largest container gateway in North America. It is also are a major centre for bulk, breakbulk, project/heavy lift cargo, automobiles and trucks.

Pictured: Port of Seattle's Terminal 5 that will be able to handle two 18,000 TEU containerships simultaneously from 2023.

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