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Freight Economy

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FHWA's Roundtable on the Freight Economy: Portland, Oregon

Date: June 23, 2016

Our Host: The Portland Business Alliance, Associated Oregon Industries, Oregon Business Association, Oregon Business Council, and Port of Portland

Key Regional Transportation Facilities and Freight Hubs

HIGHWAYSI-5, I-205, I-405, I-84, OR 99E, OR 99W, OR 212, OR 217, OR 224, US 26, US 30, SR 14, SR 500
RAILROADSUnion Pacific Railroad, BNSF Railroad
AIRPORTSPortland International Airport
WATERBORNEPortland Vancouver harbor, Columbia River, Snake River, Willamette River
PIPLINEOlympic pipeline (petroleum) and Williams Northwest pipeline (natural gas)

Freight Facilities

Source: Metro RTP 2014 Plan

Stakeholders Represented by the Following:

What the future of freight will look like for the region:

Porland Metro, OR/WA (2 FAF4 zones)

Top 5 Commodities by Value 2045

Commodity Value (millions $) % of total
Electronics 96,855 20%
Mixed freight 41,196 9%
Motorized vehicles 37,654 8%
Machinery 35,683 7%
Other ag prods. 25,988 5%
All commodities 476,849 100%

Top 5 Commodities by Weight 2045

Commodity Tons (thousands) % of total
Cereal grains 46,640 16%
Other ag prods. 40,937 14%
Gravel 26,204 9%
Wood prods. 19,014 7%
Natural gas (Coal-n.e.c.) 15,934 6%
All commodities 285,294 100%

Trading Partners 2045

Outbound by Weight of Shipment
(thousand tons)

Trade partner Tonnage % of total
Eastern Asia 69,009 51%
SE Asia & Oceania 11,717 9%
Oregon 11,600 9%
Washington 10,196 8%
California 7,461 6%
Total outbound 135,321 100%

Inbound by Weight of Shipment
(thousand tons)

Trade partner Tonnage % of total
Washington 18,477 23%
Canada 10,108 13%
California 6,091 8%
Oregon 5,079 6%
Eastern Asia 4,515 6%
Total inbound 79,221 100%

Based on FAF4.2 data with base year 2012 and forecasts up to 2045

Modal Freight Share by Tonnage, 2012 and 2045

In 2014, Oregon’s GDP was $212.8 billion and ranked 25th among states in the U.S. Portland MSA’s GDP was 75% of the state’s GDP.

About 40% of Portland MSA’s employment is generated by freight-intensive industries.

Between 2012 and 2045, the Portland region will see freight activity more than double in value and increase about 70% in tonnage.

From 2012 to 2045, the Portland region’s share of international freight both by value and tonnage is projected to grow from about 20% to about 40%.

A key trading commodity, electronics in the Portland region will have a projected $96.9 billion value in 2045, representing a 20% share of total freight value.

Trucks represent the Portland region’s predominant freight carrier now and into the future, currently carrying almost 75% of the area’s freight.

In 2014, the annual estimated highway congestion cost in the Portland MSA was $1.8 billion, ranked 11th in the nation among urban areas.

The Olympic Pipeline transports 65 percent of the petroleum products that Oregon uses. The pipeline delivers daily the equivalent of 750 tanker trucks of fuel between Puget Sound and the Portland tank farm located in the Northwest Portland industrial area.

The Portland Harbor, located at the junction of the navigable portions of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, handles the majority of marine freight in Oregon. The Columbia River’s 43- foot channel depth gives Portland access to Pacific Rim trade.

The majority of Oregon’s population resides in Portland. Between 2010 and 2040, the metro region is expected to add 917,000 residents and 597,000 jobs.

Sources for Freight Facts: FAF4 Data, Bureau of Economic Analysis,TTI 2015 Urban Mobility Scorecard,Oregon Freight Plan2011, Metro RTP 2014

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Page last modified on August 29, 2017
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