Bi-State Development

Developer Named for Container-on-Vessel Port in Jefferson County


Container-on-vessel barge service to the Midwest is sailing closer to fruition.

Texas-based Hawtex Development Corporation announced Dec. 17 it will spearhead development of a state-of-the art intermodal container-on-vessel port facility in Herculaneum, Jefferson County, in collaboration with Fred Weber/Riverview Commerce Park LLC. The project will integrate a 300-acre adjacent parcel owned by The Doe Run Company. The site was chosen due to its proximity as one of the most northern locations along the Mississippi River.

The new port will serve as a critical link in the new all-water, north-south trade lane connecting the Midwest and the St. Louis region to the lower Mississippi River for worldwide exporting and importing of containerized cargo.

“Through this new collaboration with our partners here in Jefferson County, Hawtex is looking forward to leading the development team,” said James Hurley, Hawtex president. “Early next year we hope to meet with and confirm service requirements for a number of St. Louis-based and regional beneficial cargo owners.”

Other key stakeholders in the development effort include the Jefferson Port Authority, Jefferson County, Bi-State Development, American Patriot Holdings LLC/American Patriot Container Transport LLC and APM Terminals.

Stakeholders expect the new port facility to be operational in late 2024.

Developers Talk PPP Success, Jobs Creation in Redeveloping Former Auto Plant Sites


Cooperation between public agencies and private development firms has manifested in redevelopment of – and reinvestment in – former automotive manufacturing sites across the St. Louis region.

This message came from a panel of experts who weighed in on past and present economic development successes in repurposing sites that once manufactured automobiles into vibrant business parks today.

The virtual panel spoke May 27 as part of FreightWeekSTL 2021, a week-long campaign held in partnership with the Inland Marine Expo. FreightWeekSTL 2021 provided industry leaders in development, real estate, logistics, freight, shipping and carrying with sessions and events spotlighting St. Louis’ global connectivity as a multimodal gateway for raw materials and finished goods.

Current evidence of such redevelopment success is Northpoint Development LLC’s 1.3 million-square-foot facility in Wentzville, formerly the General Motors automotive plant and now a GM suppliers’ location known as Wentzville Logistics Center. Mary Lamie, VP of Multimodal Enterprises for Bi-State Development and head of the St. Louis Regional Freightway, said the recent expansion of the former Wentzville plant has created more than 4,300 direct jobs and represents a $1.5 billion private investment – the largest private business investment in Missouri history. The facility is nearly 100 percent occupied.

Two other St. Louis-centric automotive plant redevelopments are further evidence of successful redevelopment and subsequent jobs creation, according to Doug Rasmussen, president and CEO of Steadfast City Economic & Community Partners.

One is the former Ford Motor Co. plant in Hazelwood. Panattoni Development Co. invested $250 million into the 160-acre site beginning in 2008 to repurpose it as Aviator Business Park, generating more than 1,500 permanent jobs.

The other is the former Chrysler plant in Fenton. US Capital Development bought the site in 2014, investing $300 million into it and redeveloping it as Fenton Logistics Park – creating 2,000 jobs in the process.

“The model for success for each of these locations focused on the bi-state region’s long history of supporting our manufacturing and logistics cluster,” Lamie said.

All three automotive site redevelopments included various public financial incentives in the mix.

“It’s incredible to think about what occurred at these locations and what’s there now,” said Rasmussen, who moderated the panel. “It’s a great story of rebirth resiliency, excellent locations, and the ingenuity and determination to get things done through valuable public-private partnerships.”