Exxon, SABIC select rail terminal builder for petrochemical plant

  • Jul 19, 2019
  • Fort Bend Sun

Exxon Mobil and SABIC have selected a Salt Lake City, Utah company to build and operate a rail terminal to service its $10 billion petrochemical plant near Corpus Christi.

Utah rail terminal operator Savage, which has Houston offices, will design, build and operate a 152-acre rail facility adjacent to the Gulf Coast Growth Ventures project to processes polyethylene pellets, one of the most common types of plastic.

The rail facility is expected to be completed in 2021, in anticipation of Gulf Coast Growth Ventures's planned startup by 2022. Savage will provide multiple services at the site including rail switching and railcar washing and loading, railcar repairs and facility maintenance. Construction and operation of the rail facility will help to support the roughly 6,000 construction jobs and 600 permanent the Gulf Coast Growth Venture project is expected to create.

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"We're excited to partner with GCGV on rail infrastructure and operations to support what will be a world-class petrochemical facility," said Brad Crist, Savage's Energy and Chemical Sector President. "Our nearly two decades of handling plastics and working with major industry producers, coupled with our extensive rail experience, enable us to design this rail facility from an operator's perspective to ensure it functions safely, efficiently and reliably without impact on the surrounding environment."

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Savage operates more than 50 rail terminals throughout North America, transloading dry- and liquid-bulk commodities annually. The Utah company handles a variety of chemicals and petrochemicals, petroleum products, resins, fuels, food-grade products, construction materials and other industrial commodities. Savage also offices in The Woodlands, Clear Lake and Channelview, Texas.

Last month state regulators gave the controversial Gulf Coast Growth Ventures project final approvals to build an ethane steam cracker, two polyethylene units and a monoethylene glycol unit. Construction on the 1,300-acre project will begin in the third quarter of 2019.

The petrochemical plant will be built jointly by four primary engineering, procurement and construction companies: The Wood Group, McDermott & Turner Industries Group, Chiyoda & Kiewit and Mitsubishi Heavy Industries & Zachry Group.

Earlier this month French industrial gas supplier and service company Air Liquide also said it has struck a major long-term supply deal with Exxon Mobil and SABIC's mega petrochemical project near Corpus Christi. Air Liquide is building a nearly $140 million air separation project in Bay City to support the volume expansion.

An economic impact study conducted by Impact DataSource estimated the project will generate more than $22 billion in economic output during construction and $50 billion in economic benefits during the first six years of operation, according to Exxon Mobil.