4/29 UPDATE: By the end of today, 2,890 Chrysler vehicles will have been loaded onto the vessel Hoegh Bancock and the car carrying vessel will leave for China.
"We've brought life back to Portsmouth Marine Terminal," said John Reinhart, chief executive officer and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority. "Today and tomorrow, we'll load 2,500 news Chryslers. So we're exporting U.S-made automobiles made in the Midwest, in Ohio, and they're going to Asia. So you've got jobs, you've got energy, and you've got exports,. So it's a great day for the Port of Virginia."
It's great news for the City of Portsmouth, which has watch the PMT's 219 acres sit dormant for more than three years.
"What it's going to mean for the Port of Virginia and the City of Portsmouth is jobs, jobs, jobs," said Mayor Kenny Wright. "This is clearly a new beginning. I want to thank them. We're excited."
The Port of Virginia collaborated with Pasha Automotive, Norfolk Southern, Chrysler Group LLC and Siem Car Carriers to create the six-month deal between Pasha and Virginia International Terminals, LLC.
NORFOLK -- Portsmouth Marine Terminal is back in business.
The Port of Virginia announced in April that a portion of PMT will serve as a temporary home for automobiles that will be exported to China. This is the first cargo to transit the marine terminal since it was closed in the winter of 2011.
“The immediate opportunity for PMT and the port is significant,” said John F. Reinhart, CEO and executive director of the Virginia Port Authority. “This is a good first step of providing a ‘proof of concept’ to bring business back to PMT. There is a lot of opportunity at PMT for the right users and this is one.”
A Norfolk Southern automotive train arrived at the rail carrier’s Carolina Yard in Portsmouth on March 30, carrying 700 Chrysler SUVs, manufactured near Toledo, Ohio.
The Port of Virginia collaborated with Pasha Automotive, Norfolk Southern, Chrysler Group LLC and Siem Car Carriers to create a short-term, six-month, memorandum of understanding (MOU) between Pasha and Virginia International Terminals, LLC. If all goes well, this could be the basis for a longer term agreement, Reinhart said.