Amid a decline in infrastructure investment during the COVID-19 pandemic, Bristol Port has pressed ahead with the building of a multi-million-pound steel handling terminal at Royal Portbury Dock.
The construction of the new 74,600 ft2 facility, which began in March, is specifically designed for the handling of high-quality steel coil, augmenting existing infrastructure at the Port.
With a high percentage of receivers based in the Midlands and South Wales, Bristol is claimed to be the closest deepwater port to this important steel market, significantly reducing delivery costs and reducing road transport emissions.
However, this is not the first time that Bristol Port and cargo partner GP Logistics have handled steel. James Stangroom, commercial manager at the port, said: “We have successfully handled steel coil imports since early 2017, and receivers have been able to improve their productivity, thanks to the port’s close proximity to the M5 motorway.
“Discussions with importers looking for deepsea capacity gave us the confidence to invest further in this trade. Our current warehousing has been running at high capacity for the past couple of years and so we are pleased to be able to boost this particular trade further at the Port.”
The new warehouse, which is only a 50m distance away from the unloading berth, features an overhead crane to allow for higher storage density and more efficient picking and storing of coil, leading to improved service levels for the port’s customers.
“Shipping lines have made commitments to regular calls at Royal Portbury Dock and we look forward to being of service to the wider steel community,” said David Pegg, commercial director at GP Logistics.
“GP Logistics is handling the cargo as partners to The Bristol Port Company and are also offering customs clearance, road haulage and associated services. With sister company GP Shipping acting as ships agent for the vessels, a smooth and efficient vessel arrival and discharge is assured.
“We are confident that this new warehouse at Bristol Port, with its deepwater berth, will offer a superior service level to the steel trade.”
Earlier this month, the port welcomed its first shipment of steel on board MV ORIENT DYNASTY, destined for the new steel terminal.
The Port of Bristol has posted a video of the operation on YouTube: