News Article | 11/24/2008

AllianceTexas hub No. 1 imports hub in U.S.

AllianceTexas handles more than $4 billion in foreign imports business, placing it at the top of the list for most valuable United States ports, according to a report submitted to the United States Congress.

The far north Fort Worth business hub officially known as Alliance Foreign Trade-Zone No. 196, which includes Fort Worth Alliance Airport and distribution centers for dozens of major manufacturers worldwide, was port to $4.031 billion of imports in fiscal year 2006, the latest year for available data, according to the 68th Annual Report of the Foreign-Trade Zone Board; Comparatively, the No. 2 port, Port Hueneme in California, handled $3.337 billion in the same year, or about 17 percent less than AllianceTexas.

Harris County and El Paso placed fourth and fifth, respectively, in the top five U.S. ports.

Hillwood Properties, developer of AllianceTexas and Foreign-Trade Zone No. 196. operator, has turned what used to be 17,000 acres of cattle land into a major center for commerce in 19 years.

BNSF Railway Co. recently completed $32 million in improvements, including new entry and exit gates, new bridges and almost nine miles, according to a release, allowing the facility handle 67 percent more containers, or more than 1 million annually.

A runway expansion also is in store, set to be completed by 2015, along with forthcoming improvements to Interstate 35W, expected to commence in 2009.