WILMINGTON, N.C. – The North Carolina State Ports Authority has received a $16 million grant for infrastructure improvements at the Port of Wilmington. The grant was awarded by the U.S. Department of Transportation through the Maritime Administration’s Port Infrastructure Development Program.

The funds will help support the development of a new container gate complex at the Port of Wilmington, as part of an overall five-year $200 million container-yard expansion plan. The existing container gate is not adequate for the forecasted container volumes at the port. Upon completion, the new gate will allow the Wilmington container yard to more than triple container capacity. Improvements include increasing inbound lanes for truck traffic to seven and outbound lanes to six as well as a new container operations building.

“This grant is the largest individual grant awarded to North Carolina Ports to date,” said N.C. Ports COO Brian E. Clark in a release, adding the grant “will support critical infrastructure projects that will further enable N.C. Ports and the Port of Wilmington to meet growing volumes and customer demand.”

As part of the project, the Ports Authority also will implement new terminal- and gate-operating systems, which will aid in the efficiency of the Port of Wilmington’s container yard and container gate. The new truck gate interchange will feature technologies to improve safety and efficiency including optical character recognition, weigh in motion scales and radio frequency identification that will allow trucks to move through the gate without stopping.

“Improving the container gate has long been part of our infrastructure improvements plan at the Port of Wilmington,” Clark said. “We recognized early on the need for a more modern gate. Our terminal in Wilmington is known for its fast truck turn times and this modern complex will help us maintain the speed our customers expect.”

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