Ports & Terminals

Louisiana Group Seeks Developers For New Transfer Terminal Near Mouth Of Mississippi

Louisiana now has at least three potential new terminals being explored for the Lower Mississippi River below New Orleans. The Port of New Orleans Board of Commissioners earlier this month authorized the port to move ahead with property acquisitions related to a new container terminal in St. Bernard Parish. Likewise, the Plaquemines Port Harbor & Terminal District, in partnership with American Patriot Holdings, is in the midst of a due-diligence period for a container terminal and related fleet of inland container ships proposed for lower Plaquemines Parish.

Now, the Louisiana International Deep Water Gulf Transfer Terminal (LIGTT) Authority has released an RFQ/RFP seeking qualifications and proposals from developers for a cargo transfer terminal to be located about 2.5 miles below the east bank of Southwest Pass near the mouth of the Mississippi River.

Multi-Use Terminal

Unlike the two other proposed terminals, which are centered on containers, LIGTT is envisioned as a multi-use deepwater transfer terminal built to handle containers, liquid bulk and dry bulk cargoes. LIGTT would be located on just more than 2,200 acres near the mouth of the river and federal waters of the Gulf of Mexico.

The RFQ/RFP was released December 22 on the authority’s website, www.ligtt.com.

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While the state of Louisiana is already in the early months of deepening the Mississippi River to 50 feet, with the proposed Port of New Orleans and Plaquemines Port terminals hoping to take advantage of larger ship traffic expected from the deepening, the LIGTT project aims to offer a midstream and logistics “hub-and-spoke” system located outside the Mississippi River and in deep water, according to the press release announcing the request for proposals.

“The [LIGTT] Authority will grant to the developer and its affiliated entities the exclusive right to plan, permit, engineer, design, finance, construct, operate and maintain terminal facilities to be constructed in deep water with private financing,” the announcement said. “The developer will be subject to sub-lease payments to the Authority and a portion of revenue derived from the LIGTT Project during the term of the sub-lease, the details of which will be negotiated and set forth in the development agreement.”