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Biggest ship to ever port on East Coast will make stop in Charleston

Biggest ship to ever port on East Coast will make stop in Charleston (SCPA)

The South Carolina Ports Authority will soon welcome the largest ship to ever visit Charleston Harbor. Better yet, it's the largest ship to ever make a stop along the East Coast.

The COSCO Development is expected to arrive in Charleston in May, connecting the city with goods that made their way from Hong Kong, Yantian, Ningbo and Shanghai via the Panama Canal. The ship is 1,200 feet long and 158 feet wide and capable of transporting up to 13,092 standard cargo containers.

If you are having a hard time visualizing the size of the ship, it's about as long as the Eiffel Tower is tall or about the length of two Washington Monuments.

“SCPA has worked aggressively for years to ensure we can efficiently work 13,000 twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) vessels and be the last Southeast port of call with no navigational issues,” said Jim Newsome, SCPA president and CEO. “Our naturally wide and deepwater harbor, soon to be the deepest on the entire East Coast at 52 feet, can handle vessels the Development’s size loaded heavy with cargo. Coupled with our landside capacity and infrastructure, including new super post-Panamax cranes, we offer our export customers the opportunity to load their goods in Charleston before the vessel departs for its return to Asia. We also offer excellent transit times for import cargo bound for consumer markets across the Southeast. It’s ironic to say, but this is a case in which we’ve worked very hard to be last.”

Newsome said seeing a ship that large visit Charleston is a "tangible reflection" that the vision and investments in Charleston's harbor being big-ship ready are "critical."

RELATED: Charleston waiting on check from Trump to complete harbor deepening project

This ship is the first of several large ships those with the South Carolina Ports Authority hope to attract to the Port of Charleston and the project to deepen the harbor and acquire more large cranes continues. VIEW MAP



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