ATLANTA- Many American ports are implementing massiveinfrastructure and modernization plans in order to compete formarket share with other containerized ports. This competition hasgotten more intense as 2014, the date when the widening of thePanama Canal will be finished, approaches.

In the Southeast, Savannah, with a population of just over132,000, boasts the fourth busiest container port in the US.According to a summer 2010 Jones Lang LaSalle report “On Point forthe United States: Port, Airport and Global InfrastructureOutlook,” Savannah scored 86.3 out of 100 points, the highest ofall the Southeast ports.

The scores were based on eight metrics, including the numberTEUs (20-foot-long cargo containers) handled by the port per year,industrial real estate vacancies within a 15-mile radius,infrastructure investment, labor costs and land values. Savannahled all other ports in the southeast, in spite of high vacancies inthe industrial market, because of the high volume of TEUs comingthrough port, among other factors, says Los Angeles-based JohnCarver, head of Jones Lang LaSalle's global port practice.

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