PALMETTO -- With the addition of Berth 12 and the new warehouse storage it's created, the port only needed more horsepower around the yard to push and pull things in a timely manner; and they got it Thursday when the port authority board voted to accept option six of the seven submitted. The two twin-engine locomotives, greener than any in port history and made in the USA, are just what the doctor ordered, and they're ready for delivery.
On October 18, 2012, the Port Authority approved addendum No.1 to the Grant Agreement Under the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2010, for the National Infrastructure Investment Discretionary Grant Program (Tiger II Grant) for $9 million of the funding for Birth 12 Wharf Extension and Container Terminal Project.
The addendum provided an additional $2.5 million for the purchase of the two Energy-Efficient Switch Locomotives, and an additional $643,170 in grant funding came from the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT). The cost of the two locomotives is $3.3 million. The additional $166,200 needed will come from port cash reserves until the engine that is being replaced can be sold.
Not only are the locomotives new (some of the options were reconditioned) and made in the U.S., they also produce only 35 percent of the greenhouse gasses of the current engine. That will make a difference, considering 11,000 cars a year are being pushed or pulled around the port's property.
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