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Port development Part 2: Different numbers reflect different things

Post by Kelly Kearsley on Aug. 31, 2007 at 6:03 am with No Comments »
August 31, 2007 6:03 am

I’ve received a few questions from readers about differing numbers put out by the Port of Tacoma regarding the cost of building shipping terminals on the Blair Waterway.

On July 31, the port placed a Request for Qualifications in the News Tribune soliciting surveying firms for its expansion projects on the waterway.

That notice put the preliminary construction budget for the associated marine terminals, road and rail infrastructure at $900 million.

The number I reported today was $812 million for developing of shipping terminals on the Blair Waterway – and sans the land purchases would actually be closer to $690 million.

“What gives?” asked a few astute readers.

Port of Tacoma Executive Director Tim Farrell, with assistance from the port’s engineering department explained.

The $812 million reflects what the port plans to spend and finance in the next decade in terms of developing the Blair Peninsula.

It’s primarily related to the new NYK Line terminal, but also includes the development of the old Kaiser site as a third marine terminal, Farrell said.

See today’s story for the breakdown.

The $900 million takes an even longer-term look at port development. It doesn’t include the cost of land acquisitions.

But it does include a second phase of the NYK terminal – which could be built sometime after 2019. It also includes the potential expansion of the Pierce County Terminal.

“There’s some crossover,” Farrell said, between what’s accounted for in each of the lists.

The number cited in the RFQ is an estimate to give the architects and engineers vying for the jobs a sense of the breadth of the work, Farrell said.

“We are sending a message to the (architect and engineering) community. Bring your A game and make sure you have the right team because this is a large scale project,” Farrell said.

Port and Trade
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