Following the £95 million acquisition of Tilbury Container Services, which was subsequently renamed London Container Terminal (LCT), Forth Ports is now integrating the facility with the busy short-sea terminal at Tilbury, and is investing in substantial equipment and site upgrading.
Forth Ports said that in addition to equipment upgrades and investment in new straddle carriers, plans are in place for a long-term container terminal redevelopment, including a single reception gate covering both security and container processing, new cranes, a bespoke IT system and surfacing work.
Part of the investment plan is the purchase of 14 new straddle carriers in a multi-million pound deal with Cargotec, which will deliver the four-high machines to the port in April 2013.
The straddle carrier investment has been aided by an EU Motorway of the Sea grant, awarded to the ports of Tilbury and Bilbao for the “IBUK – Intermodal Corridor” project, which aims to reduce congestion between the Iberian peninsula and the UK by moving trucks off the road onto a more efficient multimodal logistics corridor.
Perry Glading, Chief Operating Officer of Forth Ports, said: “We have put in place a significant investment plan for the London Container Terminal, which will see the continued upgrading of the site and its equipment as we work to integrate container handling across both the deepsea and shortsea operations at Tilbury.
“The acquisition has further secured Tilbury as a key shipping and distribution location with unrivalled access to London and the south-east of England.”