Monday, September 25, 2023

Port closes cargo terminal as shipping volume drops

The Port of Virginia will soon close a cargo terminal as shipping volume decreases amid the coronavirus pandemic, officials announced.

The Portsmouth Marine Terminal will close effective May 4. Ships that usually call to the port, which sits along the Elizabeth River, will instead be moved to two nearby container terminals, officials said.

Port leaders cited data from Alphaliner that indicated container ship operators have idled a record percentage of their capacity in the last month. Other records showed that in March, cargo entering the Virginia port dropped about 9 percent compared to the same time in 2019.

Shipping lines have also removed some vessels from routes that regularly stop at East Coast ports, and more removals were expected through August.

Spokesman Joe Harris said he was not sure how many workers the closure would affect, but employees at the Portsmouth terminal would be reassigned to other container terminals.

The terminal can be reopened if needed, Harris said.

John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo ( is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.

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