Posted on November 1, 2023
When the South Carolina Ports Authority expansion project in Greer is finished, tens of thousands of containers will move through the port, adding more revenue and jobs to the Upstate.
The facility, located near Greenville-Spartanburg International Airport, moves cargo via rail to the ports in Charleston, where they are shipped out of state.
“We can regularly send between 10,000 and 15,000 feet of rail car back and forth to Charleston,” said the Director of Inland Ports, Michael Hoffman. “That’s anywhere from 300 to 350 containers each day.”
Clouds of dust swirled in the wind as construction continued on the expansion on Monday. The five-year, $50 million expansion looks to more than double its capacity.
Officials said the port helps contribute to an $87 billion annual statewide impact. Around 60 workers keep the port running. It was built 10 years ago to help serve BMW’s plant in Spartanburg County.
“The port, in general, is involved in one out of every nine jobs in the state,” Hoffman said. “In the Upstate, that number is probably even higher.”
In August, the port broke its own record when it moved 17,000 containers in a single month. Officials said that figure will likely continue to go up.
Spartanburg County Councilor David Britt said the port has been a driving factor in the Upstate’s growth.
“It’s all about jobs, and what jobs do. It gives us hope and opportunity for our residents,” Britt said. “That’s the bottom line.”
The latest upgrades will bring more container storage and additional rails to the port. However, Hoffman said the project will leave the port with no more land to grow.
“That will use every square inch that we have, and we may have to look at another facility somewhere here in the Upstate in the next few years if we continue to grow,” he said.
Britt said he would be open to finding them the land they need.
“Much like any other major company that impacts the lives of our residents, if they need more land, we will find more land,” he said.