|Haifa Port has many development plans. Two of the central projects include the establishment of a new cargo gateway and the renovation of the Eastern container terminal.
The new cargo gateway project
Image a cargo gateway that spreads over 17 lanes. Try to image a truck passing by large numbers of automatic sensors that check it and also its driver, without being touched by human hands and, within just 90 seconds, providing the green light to enter or leave the port.
Soon, this will be reality - this is exactly how the planned Haifa Port cargo gateway will operate.
At this very moment, teams from the port, headed by the project's manager, Zohar Rubin, are working to provide the final specifications for the new gateway, which will replace the old Gate number 1. The Haifa Port Company is responsible for the construction and the financings (an estimated 150 million NIS), and has appointed Chaim Ziv as the Project Manager.
Completion Date: 2016
The eastern section of the gate will be built next to the port's western fence. But, the planned gate's size means that the majority of the new gate must be built on the remains of the existing gate. This means that construction must be in stages and at all stages, the continued entry and exit of trucks from the port must be possible. That's why the project has four planned stages and at any given moment, trucks will also be able to enter through the Shemen Beach gate.
In order to describe the gates structure, let's ride along for a while, helped by the diagram above, with a truck driver arriving from Shemen Beach. After passing the entry square and the left bend, the truck passes through the x-ray examination area. The innovative device is only for empty containers and the truck doesn't have to stop as the examination is done whilst the truck is moving. Immediately after the x-ray, the road widens to 9, separate lanes that take the truck to an advanced digital portal consisting of systems of sensors which, like the x-ray, don't require the truck to stop. A "digital eye" captures the truck's license plate as well as that of its trailer. An additional camera will record the container's number and also if it contains unusual materials such as, for example, dangerous substances. A special sensor will examine the drivers details (RfID) as a first check. The last check will include a passive sensor for radioactive radiation. The truck's driver, who so far hasn't needed to stop even at the digital portal, now continues on to the Main Gate. Here the road widens even more and covers no less than 17 lanes. The few seconds that pass between the portal and the main gate may be short for the driver (who passes through the main gate over a weighbridge), but they are packed with activity for the computerized system that, during this time, processes all the data collected in addition to the previous information in the TOS system, and makes the calculations and cross checks needed to: a. Authorize the trucks entry and b. prepare the JOB (sometimes more than one) that the truck has to perform in the port. Assuming that all the details are correct, when the driver reaches the main gate he will need to do three things (which shouldn't take longer than 90 seconds): first, to go through a biometric test (finger print) for security reasons, second, look at the touch screen in front of him to choose the job he'll be doing now and third, to take a print out of the Job Card which shows him where to go after passing through the gate.
And what happens when leaving? Honestly, almost the same. The new gate is designed as a spiral so that the main gate is, in effect, the exit gate. This is a solution with many benefits of which the biggest is the maximum use of the area as, this is, relatively, a small gate that covers an area of some 22 acres. In order to allow entry and exit from the same gate, the 17 lanes will be allocated as entry and exit lanes according to the load on them on any specific day - trucks leaving will use the truck exit circuit (shown on the diagram), once again pass through the Technological Portal which will collect their details with the system already being updated that the job has been completed. The truck will be weighed and, providing that everything is in order, the main gate will open and the truck will return to the peripheral road until it reaches the exit gate (shown on the diagram which will also open after receiving authorization from the system. The driver, with almost no delays, sets out to his destination. General cargo and bulk transport trucks will go through exactly the same procedure with some of the 17 lanes being set aside for them (as of now - up to three lanes). And what happens if, during this process, something isn't correct? At the center of the diagram you can see the "problem area". Trucks that the system has identified by the system as having a problem with their details will be directed to this area. Here the human element will come into play to solve the problem.
Reconstruction of the Eastern Container Terminal
Over the next three years extensive reconstruction and rehabilitation work will be done the port's Eastern Container Terminal. The work will be the responsibility of the Israel Ports Company along with Haifa Port's Engineering Division. The cost of the project is estimated at so 30 million NIS and the tender for the work was won by "Ma'agan".
The work will include, amongst other things, the strengthening of the steel splines on the quays seafront, restoration and concrete castings on the seafront beams, upgrading the cathodic protection on the spline wall at the front of the quay and more. The project is due to be completed within three years and will be carried out in stages in order to allow Haifa Port to continue to operate on a regular basis this vital container terminal.
The project is another stage in the upgrading of the Eastern Container terminal. Recently, Haifa Port completed a 170 million NIS expansion of the Eastern Container Terminal. This enabled the port to increase the terminal's capacity by 110 thousand containers a year while maintaining high levels of service.