County commissioners passed a resolution last week to spend up to $63.6 million to install 12 electric gantry cranes at the South Florida Container Terminal. The project is part of PortMiami’s “net zero program” to increase cargo capacity and decrease diesel pollution.

A gantry crane is a type of overhead crane supported by freestanding legs that move, in this case, on rubber tires. The contract would be awarded to OEC Paradise, a Pinecrest-based construction company.

The shift from diesel to electric “will result in significant reductions in greenhouse gas emissions,” according to a report from Hydi Webb, director of the county’s Seaport Department, and “increase operational efficiencies.”

Six of the electric gantry cranes replaced diesel top loaders at PortMiami in 2020.

The terminal handled a record 1.25 million TEUs in 2022, according to industry website

The electric gantry cranes will increase the terminal’s capacity by stacking containers higher, Ms. Webb’s report explains, with a potential half-million increase in TEUs.

Federal and state departments of transportation will be chipping in on the financing, $10.4 million from Washington and $18.3 million from Tallahassee.

OEC-Paradise is a partnership joint venture between OEC USA Inc. and Paradise Awnings Corp., a Miami-based company at 4310 NW 36th Ave.

As a joint venture, OEC-Paradise has less than one year of experience, Ms. Webb’s report notes. The individual firms, however, have a total combined experience of 59 years.

OEC USA has been a prime contractor on two county projects and a subcontractor on three projects. It participated in the expansion of Miami International Airport and the construction of the Miami Performing Arts Center.

Paradise Awnings has been a prime contractor on seven projects and subcontractor on 27.

The project is expected to be completed in 2026, the report states.