Improving the Port of Long Beach’s rail system is a major component of the Port’s modernization program. The Port has identified several projects to enhance rail efficiency and expand “on-dock” rail capacity.
On-dock rail allows cargo containers to be rail-hauled directly to and from marine terminals, eliminating truck trips. The Port is pursuing greater use of on-dock rail because it improves competitiveness and efficiency, and reduces air pollution by taking trucks off the road.
The Green Port Gateway project includes the realignment of railroad tracks and roadway near Ocean Boulevard and adding a Pier F Rail Support Yard to serve the future Middle Harbor terminal.
The Green Port Gateway is the first of four rail construction projects underway or scheduled to begin over the next year to enhance on-dock rail. It’s also part of the San Pedro Bay Ports Rail Enhancement Program, which includes several projects by the Port of Long Beach, the Port of Los Angeles and the Alameda Corridor Transportation Authority.
The project includes demolition and removal of existing tracks, laying of 29,000 feet of new tracks and building of 6,000 feet of retaining walls. Improvements will minimize derailments and optimize rail traffic flow. Construction is expected to continue until July 2014.
The project will serve terminals in the Port’s southeast area -- Middle Harbor, Pier G, and Pier J. For example, the addition of a third track under Ocean Boulevard will allow the Metro Ports bulk-loading facility on Pier G to perform switching operations without affecting mainline traffic. The project is also integral to the on-dock rail capacity of the future Middle Harbor Terminal.
The U.S. Department of Transportation’s TIGER III program — Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery — provided $17 million, and the state’s Prop. 1B transportation measure provided $31.75 million toward the $83.7 million project.