Gulf Coast

A transformation has taken place at U.S. ports along Gulf of Mexico. Those devastated by Hurricane Katrina in 2005 were forced to rebuild. Gulfport’s work is not yet finished. The Great Recession further impacted the region’s economy. The new bigger locks the Panama Canal offer hope for a resurgence of shipping activity along the U.S. Gulf Coast as ports gear up for new trade from Asia. While some ports are building container volumes in north-south trade and on routes to and from Europe, the Mediterranean, Mideast and Africa, others are targeting growth in breakbulk cargoes, and one port — Corpus Christi — is poised to see explosive growth in energy-based exports. With billions of dollars of agriculture products, pharmaceuticals and manufactured goods crossing the U.S. border with Mexico each year, logistics companies and railroads are looking at ways to ease and expand the flow of trade with the U.S.’s southern neighbor. This page includes information about the ports along the U.S. Gulf Coast, the region’s infrastructure projects, its trade and company supply chains.

Special Coverage

US Gulf ports are angling for a share of the increased exports, and shippers of cotton and other commodities worry resins will absorb limited container and ship capacity.

News & Analysis

20 Jul 2017
Port Houston's Roger Guenther on 2016 context, expectations for 2017, resin market impact and $1.3 billion infrastructure investments plans.
20 Jan 2016
Despite watershed changes taking place in the shipping industry in 2016, the market share of containerized imports of East, West and Gulf Coast ports this year is set look a lot like it did during the second half of 2015, according to port and industry analysts.
27 Nov 2015
It’s a boom time at U.S. Gulf ports for imports of steel and project cargoes. From Florida to Texas, the region’s ports are enjoying a second year of increased import volumes, driven by a strong dollar and U.S. economic growth.
23 Nov 2015
In 2004, Gary LaGrange set an ambitious goal: Within a decade, the CEO of the Port of New Orleans wanted the port to handle more than 500,000 20-foot-equivalent container units a year. Despite Hurricane Katrina and the Great Recession, New Orleans met that goal.
21 Nov 2015
The Port of Mobile is expanding terminal capacity and building an adjacent $36 million intermodal container transfer facility. The projects, set for completion in 2016, will increase its terminal’s 350,000-TEU capacity to 475,000 TEUs.
19 Nov 2015
U.S. shippers moving goods to and from the Midwest will have a so-called third-coast option to hedge against port congestion on the East and West coasts when an intermodal terminal serving Mobile opens in May, giving the port its first intermodal rail connection in roughly a decade.

Commentary

Vessel capacity remains the overriding concern about whether the Port of Houston will be able to handle the wave of plastic resins exports that will add half a million TEU annually to export volumes within a few years. 

Video



Port Houston's Roger Guenther on 2016 context, expectations for 2017, resin market impact and $1.3 billion infrastructure investments plans.