Port Everglades has received three super post-Panamax container gantry cranes, that they claim are the largest in the of their kind worldwide, as part of its US$3bn 20-year master/vision plan update.
Ultimately, the port’s master plan will also add new cargo berths, expand cruise and energy capacity and improve navigation channels to handle larger ships.
Jonathon Daniels, chief executive and port director at Port Everglades, said: “The state-of-the-art cranes are pivotal to allowing our customers to grow their businesses in Broward County do that they can compete in the global marketplace.
“The advantage is that the extended reach of the cranes enables customers to work larger ships and gain economies of scale, thus making Port Everglades more competitive.”
The three cranes stand 174 ft high, valued at US$13.8m each, and have the ability to handle containers stacked eight high from a ship’s desk and reach 22 containers across.
Port Everglades’ existing seven gantry cranes in the Southport area, where most of the containerised cargo operations take place, are only 151 ft high and are limited to containers stacked six high and can reach across 16 containers.
ZPMC designed and manufactured the cranes as special low-profile models that extend out rather than up to avoid the flight path of Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) which is less than two miles away.
Port Everglades has been given the option to buy three more of the same cranes and the existing seven low-profile Post-Panamax gantry cranes in Southport will be upgraded to a lift capacity of 65 tonnes.
Currently the existing cranes have a lifting capacity of 46.5 tonnes and the upgrade will add the capability to perform twin-picks (lifting two containers at a time).
All the cranes are being fitted with lighting that reduces the impact on nesting sea turtles by using lower light levels and limits the amount of lights that spreads on the ground.
The port’s master plan is the largest in its history and includes lengthening the Southport Turning Notch from 900 ft to 2,400 ft to allow for up to five new cargo berths and add about 730,000 teu extra capacity.
Construction for the US$471m project is ongoing and expected to be complete by late 2022.
The Southport Turning Notch extension project is anticipated to support an estimated 3,945 constructions and 5,529 direct induced and indirect local/regional according to a study produced by nationally recognised maritime research firm Martin Associates.
Port Everglads is also working the US Army Corps of Engineers to deepen the port’s navigation channels from 42 ft to 48-50 ft and to widen narrower sections of the channel for save vessel passage.