The New Jersey Department of Transportation (DOT) announced that the U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration (MARAD) has designated the Port Raritan Terminal Facility as a Marine Highway Project.
The designation helps to promote the development of complementary marine infrastructure to land-based transportation, to move goods and people, reducing roadway congestion.
“New Jersey has long been a leader in domestic and international multimodal freight movement on our highways, rail system and waterways,” DOT Commissioner Diane Gutierrez-Scaccetti said in a prepared statement. “The Port Raritan Terminal project designation by the U.S. Department of Transportation provides new expansion opportunities for New Jersey’s maritime shipping route capacity. In turn, this will reduce roadway congestion and truck emissions, lower shipping costs, and provide transportation options for New Jersey’s planned and future wind energy development initiatives.”
The designation of the Port Raritan Terminal affirms that the facility is part of America’s Marine Highway Program (AMHP) that encourages the use of navigable waterways for the movement of freight and people as an alternative to land-based transportation, according to the statement.
Port Raritan Terminal is now eligible for federal grants, enabling the expansion of New Jersey’s marine highway system, and providing additional options to move freight within the region.
DOT sponsored the Port Raritan Terminal Facility project designation in association with Federal Business Centers, Inc., the primary developer.
Port Raritan is now one of 46 Marine Highway projects in the United States.
About Port Raritan
Port Raritan is a North Jersey domestic marine terminal located within a 2,350-acre complex known as Raritan Center Business Park in Edison and Woodbridge that has 15 million square feet of developed leased space, approximately 350 tenants, and more than 120,000 linear feet of active freight rail track.
The site offers a mix of assets unique in the region including direct frontage on the Raritan River, which is a designated federal channel; an historic 2,000-foot wharf; active marine cargo handling for construction materials; existing rail service; outstanding access to the NJ Turnpike and other critical truck routes; ample land for development; and many well-established businesses, according to the statement.
“We’re very excited that the Port Raritan Terminal Facility has received project designation, and we look forward to working closely with MARAD and the NJDOT to continue to expand our country’s transportation infrastructure through America’s Marine Highway Program,” Peter Visceglia, president of Federal Business Centers, the primary developer of Raritan Center Business Park, said in the statement.
Port Raritan development concepts support last-mile delivery options
The Port Raritan Terminal Facility project would support streamlined last-mile delivery options for commerce that promote the use of U.S. documented vessels; eliminates more than 7 million truck vehicle miles of travel per year, thus reducing highway congestion; and facilitates short-sea shipping of cargo. All of which will support regional industry, create jobs, reduce roadway congestion, increase delivery speed, and reduce costs, according to the statement.
“New Jersey’s waterways are one of our greatest transportation assets. The DOT Division of Multimodal Services strives to plan for and implement solutions that strategically facilitate goods movement. The strong application put together by the team, and the Port Raritan project partnership by USDOT/MARAD, highlights the Department’s commitment to the effective use of New Jersey’s marine transportation system,” DOT Assistant Commissioner of Planning, Multimodal and Grants Administration Michael Russo said in the statement.
The proposed development would rehabilitate the 2,000-square-foot wharf and adjoining properties, and improve truck and rail access and storage facilities that adjoin the Raritan River.
The expansion would facilitate up to four independent marine highway intermodal freight services at the site, including:
- A barge service that would transport wheeled containers and dry vans from Port Raritan to ports across the Hudson River, eliminating travel on congested roadways.
- A ferry service that specializes in transporting trucks with drivers, effectively eliminating costly and time-consuming bridge or tunnel crossings to New York City.
- A barge delivery service for diverse cargo types that are typically delivered by truck or rail on pallets and in-unit cartons.
- A barge service that would accommodate the transfer of materials and components to offshore sites for wind-energy installation.
The developer has begun preliminary engineering and permitting for the terminal facility project, according to the statement.