By June's end, the Panama Canal Authority will officially inaugurate its $5.25 billion project to widen the canal and add a third set of locks. The expansion will allow for the passage of much larger ships, which could pave the way for a sizeable increase in containerized traffic heading to U.S. East and Gulf coasts. With the project nearly finished, many folks are wondering whether ports on these coasts are equipped to handle the potential uptick in cargoes. For a feature in our April issue, I reached out to several U.S. ports to find out. I also got in touch with a few railroads to get a better understanding of what the expansion might mean from a rail perspective. Check out my article to see what I've learned.
Do you think American ports are ready to take on any traffic increases from the expanded Panama Canal? If not, how could they better prepare? Will the expansion even lead to an uptick in cargoes? Why or why not? I'd be curious to hear your thoughts on the topic.