The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey will be putting plans to sell the Red Hook Container Terminal on hold due to political opposition and logistical challenges, according to a Crain’s report Friday. The 80-acre site will be maintained by the Port Authority for another five years, and will begin searching for a new five-year tenant in August. The lease of the terminal’s current operator, Red Hook Container Terminal LLC, expires in September 2018.
“We are working on an RFP that will be issued this summer for a new operator for Red Hook,” a Port Authority spokesman told Crain’s. “The International Longshoremen’s Association and elected officials are aware of this.”
In the past, Port Authority officials have considered selling its non-essential real estate assets in order to fund billion dollar projects such as the Gateway Tunnel and a $10 billion bus terminal in Midtown. In June, Port Authority chairman John Degnan considered selling the Red Hook terminal, though the plan was halted due to political opposition
In a 2016 report, Degnan said that Port Authority should sell assets such as the One World Trade Center and sites in Staten Island, Brooklyn, and the Bronx. According to the Real Deal, an anonymous source close to the agency said Degnan was only referring to the Red Hook terminal, and that the agency would not be selling the World Trade Center site.
“A commitment by the Port Authority for continued container and barge operations at the Red Hook Container Terminal is great news for Brooklyn and the region in terms of environmental protection, job creation, resiliency, homeland security and removing trucks from congested city streets,” a spokesman for Rep. Jerrold Nadler, who has been critical of selling the Red Hook terminal, told Crain’s.
“All of the elected officials representing the area stand shoulder-to-shoulder as fully supportive of the port’s continued critical work.”
Speaking to Crain’s, a Port Authority spokesman said that “the pending RFP is not inconsistent with the agency’s long-term interest in monetizing the Red Hook Container Terminal.”
Selling the terminal has been criticized by Nadler on the grounds that it would sacrifice jobs provided by the terminal, which Nadler says is beneficial environmentally for allowing cargo to be delivered by ship instead of by truck, cutting down on pollution.
By: Yosef Delatitsky