Port facilities located along the U.S. East Coast and the two biggest Class-1 railroads in the east are poised to grab market share from their West Coast rivals when the refurbished Panama Canal opens in 2014.
Post-Panamax vessels using the widened Panama Canal after 2014 will hurt volumes at West Coast ports. (photo by Maersk)
A report released by ProLogis, a leading global provider of distribution facilities, titled "Capital Improvements Bolster the East Coast's Intermodal Rail Network," suggests the Norfolk Southern and the CSX and the east coast ports they serve will benefit from transpacific container traffic that gets rerouted from West Coast to East Coast ports.
"With the East Coast ports maneuvering to increase their market shares, the two eastern railroads are attempting to position themselves to increase their market shares of the nation's intermodal double-stack rail freight traffic," commented Leonard Sahling, first vice president of the ProLogis Research Group. "Additionally, however big the shifts in market shares of the East Coast ports and their railroad allies do turn out to be, they are likely to have only a modest impact on the derived demand for nearby distribution facilities. The vast majority of inbound containers arriving at all U.S. ports are destined for inland population centers, and it is this portion of transpacific container traffic that is vulnerable to being rerouted from West Coast to East Coast ports."
For a copy of the report on the East Coast's intermodal network, please visit: PrologisResearchhttp://ir.prologis.com/research/EastCoastIntermodalWinter2010.cfm.