The MOL Northern Juvenile, capable of carrying 8,800 twenty-foot equivalent units (containers), set a record today as the largest container cargo ship to ever call on Jacksonville. The ship, which transited the Suez Canal from Asia before reaching the U.S. East Coast, loaded and offloaded cargo at JAXPORT’s TraPac Container Terminal at Dames Point.
Although the ship moved a significant amount of cargo during its visit to JAXPORT and hundreds of workers participated in the operation, nearly 22,000 tons of inbound cargo and a similar amount of outbound cargo that would have been handled in Jacksonville was forced to load/unload in another state due to the 40 foot depth of the St. Johns River shipping channel. A federal project to increase the depth to 47 feet to accommodate today’s larger container vessels fully loaded is in the design and engineering stage.
More than 1 million containers move through Jacksonville’s public and private marine terminals annually. Jacksonville offers worldwide cargo service from more than 40 ocean carriers, including direct service with Europe, Africa, South America, the Caribbean and other key markets.
Florida is now the nation’s third most populous state – and more than 60 million U.S. consumers live within a one-day truck drive of Jacksonville’s port. JAXPORT terminals are serviced by three U.S. interstates (I-10, I-95 and I-75), and the city has 36 daily trains via three railroads. The port’s equal balance of imports and exports provides backhaul opportunities, saving money and maximizing transportation costs.
JAXPORT has invested $600 million in recent infrastructure investments in everything from cranes to docks to rail and an authorized project to deepen the federal shipping channel.