New Dutch Terminal To Promote Mode Shift

July 8, 2009
When completed, the Container Transferium in Alblasserdam, east of the Port of Rotterdam, will take 200,000 container equivalents off the roads and inland waterways.

The Dutch Transport Ministry and Port of Rotterdam Authroity signed a founding agreement on June 29, 2009 for a €38 million ($53 million) Container Transferium (container transfer facility) to be operated by Binnenlandse Container Terminals Nederland’ (BCTN).

Scheduled for completion by the end of 2011, the Container Transferium (CT) should draw 200,000 twenty-foot-equivalent units (TEUs) of containers off the roads and inland waterways. This, says the Port of Rotterdam Authority, is roughly equal to 10% of the truck traffic on the A15 highway.

Trucks deliver to and collect containers from Alblasserdam. The distance of approximately 50 kilometres (31 miles) to the Maasvlakte is bridged by inland vessels. For those containers with a final destination or origin near the CT, the facility should keep the transport times at least constant at tariffs that appeal to the market, says the Port of Rotterdam.

This is the first time the port authority has promoted such a partnership. Under the agreement, Port Authority will buy the land and plan and pay for the water related infrastructure. It will lease this infrastructure of the 6.5 hectare (16 acres) site to the operator BCTN. In addition to the Port Authority, APL, APM Terminals, ECT, Evergreen, Hapag-Lloyd, Maersk Line, MOL and Rotterdam World Gateway have signed a ‘Letter of Support’ to endorse the principle of the CT and to support the concept. BCTN already operates terminals in Nijmegen (in the east of the Netherlands), Den Bosch (south), Wanssum (southeast) and Hengelo (northeast). The transferia fits into the policy of the Dutch government and the PoRA to promote transport by rail and water and to shift containers from road to the other modes of transport in order to reduce the number of trucks in the road.