The Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor opens its 40th shipping season on April 9 with the arrival of the first international vessel – the Iryda. For 40 years, this Great Lakes port has provided an international connection for local businesses to reach world markets. The first ship signifies the start of the shipping season, the arrival of vital materials for local business and the start of another work season for longshoremen, crane operators, truckers and businesses that depend on the port.
The Iryda was built in 1999 in Chiba, Japan, located on Tokyo Bay. It brings roughly 9,000 tons of steel coils to the port from Ijmuiden, Holland. The ship made a stop in Cleveland on its way to Burns Harbor, will continue on to Milwaukee and will be reloaded in Duluth, Minn., before heading back across the Atlantic Ocean. Flagged for the Republic of Cyprus, the Iryda is manned by a crew from Poland and Capt. Andrzej Kazmierski. The ship visited the port twice during the 2009 season, in April and October.
Since 1970, the Port of Indiana-Burns Harbor has grown from a single tenant to the 29 companies that call the port home today. The port now handles more ocean-going cargo than any other U.S. Great Lakes port and 15 percent of U.S. steel trade with Europe.
“These past 40 years have been a time of dynamic growth for the Ports of Indiana, and as the first of Indiana’s three ports, Burns Harbor is a shining example that our state is not landlocked,” said Ports of Indiana CEO Rich Cooper. “Indiana is just one of a few interior states that has direct connections to two global trade corridors via the Gulf of Mexico and Atlantic Ocean, and those corridors play a vital role in our state’s economy.”
The Ports of Indiana is a statewide port authority that operates a system of three ports on the Ohio River and Lake Michigan. The mission of the Ports of Indiana is to develop and maintain a world-class port system that operates as an agile, strategically-driven, self-funded enterprise dedicated to growing Indiana's economy. More than 60 companies operate at Indiana's three ports. The Ports of Indiana manages approximately 2,600 acres of property along the Ohio River and Lake Michigan - and has 800 acres available for future development.