One of the largest shipments in the 50-year history of the Ports of Indiana is set to arrive this week in Burns Harbor. The port is receiving cargo for a $1 billion power plant under construction in Niles, Michigan.
According to the Ports of Indiana, the largest piece is a 613,000-pound steam recovery system that is scheduled to arrive in the deep-water port. The component is 100 feet long, 12 feet high, and 15 feet wide.
“We have seen an uptick in large project cargo shipments this year for power plants and wind energy components, but the size and scope of this project make it one of the largest shipments in our port’s 50-year history,” said Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor Port Director Ian Hirt.
Once the 300-ton system is offloaded, dockworkers will use an 84-axle, 249-foot-long tractor-trailer to move it to a storage yard, before making the last part of the journey to southwest Michigan.
“It is not every day you get to see our port companies and labor force handling 600 pieces of cargo for one massive power plant project,” said Hirt.
The port authority said the vessel is one of six that arrived this summer with components for the project. The equipment was shipped “halfway around the world,” according to port officials on a two-month journey.
Hirt said Burns Harbor allows over-sized cargoes to reach the Midwest and eliminates the need for overweight trucks driving several hundred miles from coastal ports.
Construction on the power plant started last August. It is expected to be operational in 2022.