“K” Line marks 25 years at the Port of Tacoma

When the ship Chicago Bridge arrived Sunday, it marked the 25th anniversary of Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, Ltd. ("K" Line) calls at the Port of Tacoma.

The Japan-based carrier, with its distinctive red containers, is the longest-calling international shipping line at the Port.

“We are proud of and thankful for the close partnership that has allowed both “K” Line and the Port of Tacoma to grow over the years,” said Tong Zhu, the Port’s chief commercial officer.

When “K” Line first called Tacoma in 1988, its ships berthed at a 37-acre terminal on the Sitcum Waterway. It expanded in 2005 to the 93-acre Husky Terminal on the Blair Waterway. Both terminals are served by the North Intermodal Yard, whose efficient on-dock rail originally attracted “K” Line to Tacoma.

When “K” Line first arrived, it sent two outbound trains of 40-plus rail cars each week to the Midwest and East Coast. Back then its weekly ship call brought in about 1,700 containers.

It now departs six trains of 100 cars each week, plus an additional 125 or more to and from Portland. Echoing the trend of larger ships in the trans-Pacific trade, the Chicago Bridge, which arrived Monday, holds almost 6,000 container units.

Improvements are underway to add 100-gauge crane rail to Pier 3 and redesign an aligned Pier 4 at Husky Terminal to accommodate simultaneous berthing of larger ships in the future.

About “K” Line
"K" Line is a fully integrated intermodal transportation company linking the entire Pacific Rim with North America and Europe. Multiple weekly fixed-day sailings between the Pacific Northwest and Southwest and the Pacific Rim as well as weekly fixed day sailings between Europe and the United States East Coast offer direct connections to "K" Line’s exclusive double-stack train service covering the United States and Canada. To learn more about “K” Line, visit www.kline.com

About the Port of Tacoma
The Port of Tacoma is an economic engine for South Puget Sound, with more than 43,000 family-wage jobs in Pierce County and 113,000 jobs across Washington state connected to Port activities. A major gateway to Asia and Alaska, the Port of Tacoma is among the largest container ports in North America. The Port is also a major center for bulk, breakbulk and project/heavy-lift cargoes, as well as automobiles and trucks.