Port of Oakland announces improvements for drayage trucking

Oakland drayage initiatives
Existing underpass in Oakland–Credit: Aric Crabb/Bay Area News Group

August 10, 2023 – The Port of Oakland is looking to increase cargo throughput with several new initiatives aimed specifically at improving conditions for drayage trucking in the area.

The initiatives come as the port’s throughput continues to decline in comparison with other ports in the region and around the country.

As part of their revitalization plan, Port of Oakland recently announced a partnership with data analyst QuayChain, which will oversee a pilot installation of a “neural network” aimed at providing access to real-time street data-tracking throughout the port.

“Our goal has been for the port to be one of the first organizations piloting a data transparency portal to make sure people know where their cargo is,” said Bryan Brandes, the Port of Oakland’s Director of Maritime.

He said QuayChain’s street data will drive that new portal with “real-time data of the movement of containers, chassis, and trucks across the streets of the Port.”

QuayChain CEO Andrew Scott told the Journal of Commerce that the firm will install its hardware—known as QuayChain Edge Devices—around the port and at off-port locations such as container yards and warehouses.

The Port of Oakland said it will provide the digital infrastructure for the new technologies “to support users and improve efficiency and sustainability across all parties.”

Weston LaBar, Chief Spokesperson for Cargomatic, endorsed the move, saying that such partnerships are “huge steps” in fortifying the nation’s digital supply-chain infrastructure.

In particular, such partnerships provide “the bedrock for publicly available data and will drastically help private sector operators, especially the tech-forward innovators like Cargomatic, continue to reduce friction and delays for customers.”

oakland concept

Oakland officials have also announced groundbreaking for what is called the 7th Street Grade Separation East Segment (7SGSE) Project, which is meant to improve truck and rail access to the Port of Oakland. 

Around 40% of containers passing through the Port of Oakland travel along 7th Street, which includes a low, 90-year-old railroad underpass, and helps to create a chronic source of congestion for drayage drivers.

The $364.5 million project announced by officials aims to ease congestion for the hundreds of trucks that use the route by widening traffic lanes, heightening the clearance of the underpass and updating seismic standards.

“Improving this infrastructure supports safer transportation for truckers and the community, improved operations, and tens of thousands of jobs and positive economic impact for Oakland and the region,” Port of Oakland spokesperson Marilyn Sandifur said in a statement.

 The 7SGSE development is the first phase of a much larger project called “Global Opportunities at the Port of Oakland,” a $718.8 million program which aims to improve truck and rail access to the maritime gateway.

EMBEDDED PHOTO: Proposed underpass development in Oakland

CREDIT: Alameda County Transportation Commission