Heavylift / Breakbulk
A heavy anniversary
The gateway in Burns Harbor is celebrating its 50th anniversary with a rather special project. Hundreds of elements needed for the construction of a power station transited through the hub on the southern shore of Lake Michigan.
The shipping hub in Burns Harbor, a part of the Ports of Indiana authority and located on the southern shore of the Lake of Michigan, registered an unusual amount of activity recently. No less than six vessels handled about 600 units there, destined for the construction of a combined-cycle power station located in Niles MI. The largest of the consignments, a generator for steam recovery, was 30 m long and weighed in at 278 t.
The port had already registered a rise in heavylift shipments before deliveries for the power station started, but this project was exceptional, according to port director Ian Hirt. “The size and the scope of this project make it one of the largest shipments ever to have been handled in our port’s 50-year history.” The gateway is well-known internationally as a leading Midwestern hub for shipping heavylift and project cargo, because of its ocean access and its proximity to the US heartland.
Largest shipment in the hub’s history
The goods needed for the power station project encompassed around 25,000 m³ – ten times the volume of the Statue of Liberty. Federal Marine Terminals unloaded the cargo from the vessels. The elements were then put in interim storage in the gateway, until they could be transported over the last leg to Niles by road.
The power station will supply around 635,000 households in Michigan with electricity and is due to go on stream in March 2022.