The 14,400 teu capacity vessel, CMA CGM Theodore Roosevelt has become the largest container ship to call the Port of New York and New Jersey after arriving at APM Terminals (APMT) Elizabeth container terminal.
The ship also became the largest vessel to pass under the raised roadbed of the Bayonne Bridge, which now gives air draught clearance to vessels of up to 18,000 teu capacity.
The US$1.6bn project was completed in June and raised the bridge roadbed by 64 ft to 215 ft.
Until now, container ships calling the Port of New York & New Jersey were mainly of the 5,000 – 8000 teu size class. The largest ship ever previously recorded at APMT Elizabeth before was 9,600 teu.
The CMA CGM Theodore Roosevelt, launched in Yangshan, China, is undertaking a maiden voyage on the Ocean Alliance South Atlantic Express (SAX) service.
The vessel is linking Shanghai, Ningbo, Yantian and Hong Kong to Savannah, Charleston and Norfolk on the US East Coast.
APMT Elizabeth is currently undergoing a US$200m infrastructure investment programme that will be completed in 2018.
The programme will see berth reconstruction and additional berths with dredging to 50 ft to operate at least three upgraded ships alongside simultaneously.
There will also be four new gantry cranes with a 23 container reach, and a new truck gate complex will be constructed in a previously unused terminal area.
APMT claims that this plan will eliminate any construction zone impact to current operations.
Jeremy Ford, head of commercial for APMT North America, said: “What will set this facility apart is that these capabilities we are building are being conceived not only with our steamship line customers in mind, but also with our landside customers in mind.”