Port of Oshawa has opened a new $2.5 million cargo pad to increase the handling options for shippers and shipping lines using the harbour. “The new cargo pad will allow the port to accommodate far more bulk materials,” said Donna Taylor, President and CEO of Oshawa Port Authority. “The more cargo we can handle, the better we’re able to serve existing customers and attract new ones.”

The pad was built on the East Wharf Terminal in partnership with Oshawa Stevedoring Inc. and is one of the major steps in Oshawa’s redevelopment to boost business. Bulk cargo will be transferred to or from ships by truck and ultimately by a conveyor system.

In addition, the Port is building a 45,000 square foot transit shed. “This improvement will enable the Port to handle rail cars, store steel, project cargo and containers,” Taylor points out. “The $2.8 million project, due to open this fall, is being constructed adjacent to the rail spur on the expanding Port boundaries. It will have a gravel storage and parking area.

“While the rail spur was the impetus for this project, the Port recognized that additional covered storage was required to accommodate the increase in business coming to the Port and the diversity of cargo it is receiving,” she said. “Expansion to the north on lands formerly occupied by the Port Authority’s offices had always been part of the long term planning for the Port, but have been brought forward by this increased business and connectivity to the port via the spur.”

Taylor said the pad was a necessity because “we had run out of space for bulk cargoes.” The presence of the pad has already led to a long-term agreement with a new bulk customer, which is constructing a 15,000-tonne storage facility on the site. It has also produced enquiries from other companies looking for new delivery routes for their supply chain.

The pad was built to the highest environmental standards and includes a settling pond “so that if we did get aggregates that have dust or salt, any runoff can be collected and disposed of in an environmentally responsible manner.”

Taylor notes “We’re delighted that our investment in port expansion is paying off in a major way, and we’re confident there will be many more new bulk customers.”