Petroplex to build major Louisiana liquids terminal

Petroplex International, a Baton Rouge-based bulk liquid storage tank terminals development company, says it has raised capital to move forward with plans to build a $600 million multi-modal bulk liquid terminal in St. James Parish, Louisiana, with a projected initial storage capacity of 4 to 6 million bbl.

Petroplex is part of a consortium financing the project along with Australian investment bank Macquarie Group and individual investor Harley Franco, CEO and founder of Harley Marine Services.

The storage and distribution terminal will hold crude oil, refined petroleum products, fuel oil, chemicals, agrichemicals, renewable fuels, and other commercial liquid commodities and will provide in-tank blending capabilities throughout the facility, developers said.

The initial phase of the project includes the design, engineering, development, and operation of a state-of-the-art storage terminal that is capable of receipt or delivery between a variety of intermodal systems, including trucks, railcars, marine barges and ocean-going vessels, and connections to the existing and future pipeline infrastructure systems.

Once completed, the project will be the only dedicated independent “for-hire” terminal services company serving the growing St. James crude and refining market, officials said.

“We are pleased to announce that we are ready to advance the development of this much-needed project through to completion,” said Mark Helmke, president of Petroplex.

“The development team has done an excellent job in getting the project to this stage. With our consortium partners Macquarie Group, Quanta Services and Mr. Franco, we are positioned to promptly deliver an important infrastructure solution to a high-demand market.”

Mr. Helmke said the substantial increase in crude oil production from domestic shale formations and Canadian oil sands is rapidly changing product supply flows in North America, thereby requiring new infrastructure to accommodate its storage.

“The St. James region is expected to significantly benefit from new production and crude supply shifts,” he said.

“We believe that Petroplex is in an ideal location to provide terminal services for the seamless movement and storage of all commercial liquid commodities. The project is strategically located in close proximity to key intermodal infrastructure, waterways, refineries and manufacturers and will provide a unique storage solution to producers.”

Construction is expected to commence during the first half of 2013, and the facility is expected to begin commercial operations during 2014.

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