Port of Houston

Port of Houston

The Port of Houston is the major container gateway for Texas, and the 100 million people who live between the Mississippi River and the Rocky Mountains. It handles about two-thirds of all the containerized cargo in the U.S. Gulf of Mexico.

Servicing all major trading lanes, Houston offers shippers direct connections by highways (Interstates to both east and west coasts; and northwards to the midwest) and railways connecting Texas to the southeast, the midwest and the southwest. Mexico is the Greater Houston region’s top foreign trading partner, followed by China, Brazil, the Netherlands and South Korea.

Houston has long been considered the capital of virtually every segment of the US energy industry, including exploration, production, transmission, marketing, supply, and technology. As a result, the Port of Houston is a major gateway for US trade in petroleum products such as petrochemical resins used by industry. Texas also produces more cotton than any other state, and the city has long been a center of the cotton trade.

The Port of Houston’s two container-handling facilities are port-owned and operated. Barbours Cut Container Terminal, located at the mouth of Galveston Bay, is 3.5 hours sailing time to open waters of the Gulf of Mexico. Its six berths provide 6,000 feet of continuous quay. The facility also includes a roll-on/roll-off platform, a LASH dock, over 200 acres of paved marshaling area and over 250,000 square feet of warehouse space. Intermodal rail service is available via the 42-acre near-dock rail ramp with working tracks and spurs connecting terminal warehouses.

Bayport Container Terminal, when fully developed, will have a total of seven container berths with the capacity to handle 2.3 million TEUs on a complex which includes 376 acres of container yard and a 123-acre intermodal facility. The terminal features electronic data interchange capabilities and a computerized inventory control system that tracks the status and location of individual containers.

The Port of Houston’s rail facility is located near the Barbours Cut Container Terminal dock. The primary railroad companies are BNSF, Union Pacific, and the PTRA (Port Terminal Railroad Association), which provides access to the industries along the Houston Ship Channel for railroads entering Houston. Straddling both sides of the Channel, PTRA services more than 200 local customers from 7 serving yards, while maintaining more than 150 miles of track and 20 bridges.

A surge in oil and gas drilling in West Texas has created a steady stream of cheap natural gas liquids to turn into feedstocks for plastics, building materials and consumer goods. Major Houston-area producers are investing billions of dollars in their local facilities to meet growing demand from Asia and South America.  

 

02 Jul 2020
The US government’s $700 million loan to YRC Worldwide guarantees LTL stability in an uncertain economy.
02 Jul 2020
Unadjusted Labor Department employment numbers show motor carriers have recovered about 44 percent of the jobs lost from February to April.
02 Jul 2020
APM Terminals is rolling out a set of data connectivity tools, initially at two US ports, to inform shippers of container status and vessel arrival on a more real-time basis.
02 Jul 2020
BBC Chartering CEO Ulrich Ulrichs said in a JOC Uncharted interview that the MPV/HL fleet should brace for higher operating costs and further consolidation, similarly to the global container fleet.
02 Jul 2020
Montreal waterfront employers a decade ago locked out longshore workers for several days, after the union authorized a strike following an 18-month impasse in contract talks.
02 Jul 2020
Transplace has begun providing managed transportation-like services to customers that have their own transportation management system but want to be able to benchmark against the data of the $11 billion of freight the 3PL manages.
01 Jul 2020
Following a pandemic-driven slide, the Toepfer Multipurpose Index is expected to stabilize in July.
01 Jul 2020
For drayage operator Mark-It Express Logistics, the purchase of Sava Transportation and Spirit Trucking represent the first steps in a larger consolidation plan.
01 Jul 2020
Forwarders in the container supply chain are keeping a close eye on rising demand from European shippers, as carriers try to balance capacity with rising volume.
01 Jul 2020
The US CARES Act loan to YRC Worldwide keeps US military LTL shipments moving, and gives the US taxpayer a nearly 30 percent share in the company.
01 Jul 2020
The seventh episode of JOC Uncharted features a one-on-one conversation with BBC Chartering CEO Ulrich Ulrichs, and a panel discussion on what LTL digitalization means to carriers and shippers and how it will unfold.
01 Jul 2020
Five of the major carriers now offer online quoting and booking with Mediterranean Shipping Co. the latest to launch its e-business solution.
30 Jun 2020
Montreal employers say the longshoremen’s decision was a surprise and said they are considering other options than focusing on contract negotiations. Employers locked out workers in 2010 after contract talks hit an impasse.
30 Jun 2020
An increase in the traffic mitigation fee in Los Angeles-Long Beach will support rising labor costs for night and weekend gates.
30 Jun 2020
Retailers and forwarders say July 1 general rate increases (GRIs) could send spot container freight rates in the eastbound trans-Pacific to record levels.
30 Jun 2020
Construction at the Port of Virginia to increase capacity of the Norfolk International Terminals to 2.2 million TEU is nearly complete, with the final eight cranes to move containers onto trucks to be commissioned in July.
29 Jun 2020
Bankrupt Comcar sells its dry-van and refrigerated trucking subsidiary to Canada’s largest transportation company, which is expanding its presence in the United States.
29 Jun 2020
Indian Customs authorities have not issued any official information on the additional checks, but customs brokers and forwarders say Customs officials have been given “internal” government instructions to manually inspect all Chinese cargo.
29 Jun 2020
The upstate New York inland port provides cargo owners an alternative to the 245-mile truck haul, as the region attracts more distribution centers.
29 Jun 2020
The IMF has cut further its already gloomy economic growth outlook for Europe and North America, as carriers make further capacity adjustments on the trans-Atlantic trade.
29 Jun 2020
On the path from static quotes to instant quotes, a key stepping stone is better connecting forwarders’ rate management tools with the transportation management systems they use.
29 Jun 2020
A renewed push to reduce port stay times, driven by larger decarbonization goals, represents a rare scenario in which carriers, terminal operators, and cargo owners could all benefit.
26 Jun 2020
High-growth retailers have a better sense of their deficiencies in transportation management and other supply chain components than their low-growth peers, a new study has found.
26 Jun 2020
With phase 1 of the Georgia International Trade Park now complete and a new headquarters for Port City Logistics being built a few miles from the trade park, the Savannah area is adding new warehousing and distribution capacity at a time when space is especially tight.
26 Jun 2020
Individual container carrier mergers and acquisitions, as well as a reconfiguring of vessel sharing alliances has created an environment in which members could begin to coordinate intermodal rail and trucking transport.
26 Jun 2020
In a pandemic-distorted logistics environment, due diligence has never been more important, project logistics service providers tell JOC.com.
26 Jun 2020
Despite a difficult business environment, new MPV/HL carrier KOGA Shipping is growing its client base as it enters the US Gulf-Caribbean market, according to CEO Fernando Maruri.
25 Jun 2020
NVO market share of US imports from Asia increases as dozens of blank sailings push cargo owners to seek capacity their core carriers are not providing to them.
25 Jun 2020
During Paul Cozza’s tenure as head of the North Carolina Ports Authority, container volume through the Port of Wilmington increased 25 percent and refrigerated volumes quadrupled.
25 Jun 2020
In the face of COVID-19, logistics contracting should carefully define the events that trigger the application of force majeure remedies.
25 Jun 2020
Carriers are more united than ever in matching capacity with demand as they keep firmly focused on their bottom line, says DHL Global Forwarding.
25 Jun 2020
Spot rates have jumped more than 40 percent in the last four weeks for shippers using rail-owned boxes out of Los Angeles due to an equipment shortage in Southern California unseen since 2018.
25 Jun 2020
Industry majors have teamed up with the Maersk Group in an initiative to identify and develop a fuel that will decarbonize the global shipping sector.
24 Jun 2020
Mexican businesses and their US and Canadian partners are focused on rebuilding supply chains shattered by COVID-19 and the recession, but they shouldn’t forget USMCA.
24 Jun 2020
Shippers split between those growing during recession and those struggling need to focus on long-term supply-chain improvements to reduce costs, rather than short-term rate cuts.
24 Jun 2020
Carriers are shaking off some of their pessimism for this year, with more rosy outlooks and improved expectations emerging as the demand-challenged second quarter draws to a close.