Shipping was one of the first sectors to fall at the start of the pandemic. Ports were shuttered, cargo space dried up and nearly every industry relying on international supply chains suffered. It wasn’t until July 2020 that things began to turn around.
Now, ports are humming once again. And they’re feeding an expected growth of 200 million square feet of industrial space.
Busy ports require warehouses, distribution centers and fulfillment centers. As port traffic continues to increase, so too does demand for these facilities. However, due to a trend toward consolidating shipping on larger vessels, a smaller number of ports are reaping the benefits.
Some of the biggest growth has been tracked in:
- New York/New Jersey
- Savannah, GA
- Houston, TX
- Long Beach, CA
Select inland locations are benefiting as well, due to their connections to the major coastal centers. Inland growth is concentrated in the Eastern half of the Unites States, with top ports including:
- Front Royal, VA
- Charlotte, NC
- Greer, SC
- Dillon, SC
- Dalton, GA
Investments in infrastructure
In response to the rising demand, several major ports have undertaken substantial infrastructure improvements. The Port of Miami spent $1 billion improving their channel and crane operations. Los Angeles is also planning for rail improvements on its docks. If shipping traffic increases proportionally to these investments, industrial demand can be expected to rise in these markets as well.