Work has started at California’s Port of Oakland to heighten four 366-foot ship-to-shore cranes by 27-feet over a nine month project.
The cranes, which are used to load and unload container vessels, will be better able to reach containers stacked high above decks on modern-day megaships.
The first of the four units was pulled off its guide rails last week and shuttled to the eastern edge of OICT’s Oakland Estuary dock, where the work will take place beginning next month.
Over a nine-week period, engineers will brace the crane on supports, cut away its lower legs and affix extensions. The modified crane is scheduled to return to duty before withdrawing the next one for raising in August.
“This is a commitment to the future of shipping in Oakland,” John Driscoll, the Port’s Maritime Director, said, adding that “vessels are getting bigger and bigger and we’re providing the infrastructure to keep them coming our way.”
Oakland International Container Terminal’s (OICT) cranes will be raised in partnership with SSA Marine, the terminal operator under the project which is estimated to cost around USD 14 million.
The port said that crane-raising is part of an overall effort to strengthen Oakland’s competitiveness among West Coast ports. Other projects underway or expected to begin soon include doubling the size of the nearby TraPac marine terminal, constructing a 287,000-square foot Cool Port for refrigerated cargo transport and developing the first 27 acres of a Seaport Logistics Complex that will attract additional imports and exports.