Sunday, June 13, 2021
June 13, 2021

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Port of Longview purchases 26 more acres at Barlow Point from Millennium Bulk

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The Port of Longview added 26 acres to its existing Barlow Point property this week, purchasing the land from the bankrupt Millennium Bulk Terminals for $255,000 to use as mitigation for future projects.

Millennium Bulk Terminals’ proposed coal terminal also was dealt another blow in court. The bankruptcy filing meant pending appeals to denied permits were dismissed Tuesday.

The two parcels the port purchased round out the port’s holding at Barlow Point, as they were the final waterfront sections the port did not already own in its 282-acre undeveloped parcel. Barlow Point is about four miles downriver from the Port’s primary terminal.

Commission President Allan Erickson said the land will “increase our flexibility as we go forward,” making it an important step to the port’s future.

The port had bought the majority of Barlow Point in 2010 for about $2.5 million. The site was previously owned by Terra Firma, Inc. and is the former site of Longview Motocross. It has added smaller parcels periodically since that time.

The two most recent parcels went up for sale after Millennium Bulk Terminals’ parent company, Lighthouse Resources, entered bankruptcy court in December 2020. It sold off its land holdings that did not revert to its landlord, Alcoa. The port decided to bid on the land from the Barlow Point Land Co., a subsidiary of Millennium Bulk, at the Feb. 10 commission meeting. The deal closed Tuesday.

While the port does not have immediate plans for the land, the Barlow Point area is seen as potential environmental mitigation land to offset future development, Port CEO Dan Stahl said. It is zoned as manufacturing, which is the same as the port’s existing property.

“Mitigation is a critical component of development,” Stahl said. “Property like this ensures the port can continue to preserve habitat and public access to the waterfront as the port continues to grow.”

Millennium Bulk Terminals had planned to build a $680 million coal export terminal on the land it leased from Northwest Alloys, but ran into permitting delays when the state denied it two shoreline and one water quality permits. Millennium Bulk appealed the decisions.

The company and the state had been locked in legal battles since the project was pitched in 2012, but the company’s appeal was dismissed Tuesday by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals because “a case is moot and must be dismissed if, at any time during the proceeding, it loses its character as a present, live controversy.”

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