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Freight movement, port facilities, and economic competitiveness.
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Freight movement, port facilities, and economic competitiveness.
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  • Abstract:
    This research report examines how the Panama Canal expansion will affect freight at three ports, truck movement

    between the ports and inland economic hubs and the economic impacts accompanying the shift in cargo shipping

    patterns. Economic impacts stemming from the Panama Canal expansion are examined with three primary research

    objectives: to profile the relationship between the Panama Canal and port activities along the East and Gulf Coasts

    and explore the nature of inland freight movement; to examine the implications for highway infrastructure resulting

    from a change in freight movement; and to model different scenarios of the Panama Canal expansions’ impact on

    local economic activity.

    The analysis begins by examining 14 east and Gulf Coast ports having a combined cargo volume of over one

    quarter million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU). The research contains a deeper analysis of the relationship

    between highway network conditions, port activity and local and regional economies utilizing large seasonal truck

    GPS samples for three selected ports: the Garden City Terminal at the Port of Savannah, the Norfolk International

    Terminals in at the Port of Virginia, and the Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal at the Port of New Orleans. GPS

    truck data showed that congestion around the Port of New Orleans is limiting truck range compared with Savannah

    or Norfolk. While the Savannah area is not severely congested, main truck routes encounter congestion around

    major cities and highway interchanges in Georgia, and by 2040 congestion is expected to affect urban and rural

    interstates in South and North Carolina

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