Port’s LaGrange Appointed To US DOT's Maritime Transportation System National Advisory Committee
NEW ORLEANS — The U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration appointed Port of New Orleans President and CEO Gary LaGrange to its Maritime Transportation System National Advisory Committee. The committee includes executives of shipping lines, port authorities, and shippers, as well as heads of government agencies involved in marine transportation. The term is for two years and begins this month.
“This is truly an honor to be appointed by the Maritime Administration to serve on this Committee,” LaGrange said. “The Nation’s maritime infrastructure is of vital importance not just to shippers and the maritime transportation industry, but to consumers and the overall economy, as well. It is my goal to help spread that message, while working to invest in our nation’s ports, waterways and last-mile connectors.”
The objective of the committee is to provide information, advice and recommendations to the U.S. Secretary of Transportation on matters relating to the U.S. marine transportation system and seamless integration with other segments of the transportation system, including the viability of the U.S. Merchant Marine. The Committee will gather information and present recommendations on several key issues, including:
• Impediments hindering effective use of “short-sea” transportation, including the expansion of America’s Marine Highways for freight and passengers;
• Improving waterborne transport, port and intermodal connector efficiencies to reduce congestion on roadways;
• Strengthening maritime capabilities essential to economic and national security;
• Modernize the maritime workforce by inspiring and educating the next generation of mariners;
• Drive maritime innovation and;
• Examine other timely key issues related to the Agency’s mission.
The Port of New Orleans is a deep-draft multipurpose port at the center of the world’s busiest port system — Louisiana’s Lower Mississippi River. Connected to major inland markets and Canada via 14,500 miles of waterways, six class-1 railroads and the interstate highway system, Port reps said the Port is the ideal gateway for steel, project cargo, containers, coffee, natural rubber, chemicals, forest products, manufactured goods and cruising. An extensive network of ocean carrier services, along with added-value services like transloading of bulk into containers, make the Port of New Orleans the superior logistics solution for many types of cargo.
The Port has invested more than $100 million in capital-improvement projects since 2012 and has a Master Plan to expand the Napoleon Avenue Container Terminal to an annual capacity of 1.5 million TEUs.