Managing Two Projects as One

by John J. Terpstra, Sr. Dir. of Facilities; Port of Tacoma, P.O. Box 1837, Tacoma, WA 98401,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1986, Vol. 56, Issue 8, Pg. 36-39

Document Type: Feature article


The Port of Tacoma completed a new two berth container terminal and intermodal yard for Sea-Land in May 1985, only 26 months after signing a binding agreement. The project, which also included a new terminal for Totem Ocean Trailer Express because of space conflicts, required intensive project management and strong leadership to overcome literally hundreds of opposing actions and constraints. This article outlines only a few of the many challenges and unique approaches that were used to bring the project to a successful close. Items presented include an explanation of scheduling techniques, the management organization, permitting actions, real estate transactions, intermodal yard development, semi fast track nature of the project, design progress problems, contractor interface controls, and contaminated dredge materials problems. The project was completed on time and only minimally over budget.

Subject Headings: Project management | Dredged materials | Berths | Container shipping | Agreements and treaties | Ocean engineering | Dispute resolution | Leadership | Tacoma | Washington | United States

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