SAVANNAH - The Georgia Ports Authority will spend $86.5 million to add 24 cranes for moving cargo containers at the Port of Savannah.
Port authority board members approved the purchase Monday. It includes four new ship-to-shore cranes used to lift containers on and off cargo ships. The remaining 20 cranes will be used to transport cargo within the port's busy Garden City terminal.
Curtis Foltz, executive director of Georgia's ports, said the new cranes will let Savannah accommodate larger ships and provide faster service. They are expected to arrive in February 2016.
Georgia officials are pushing Washington to begin before the end of this year a $652 million expansion of the Savannah harbor that would make room for larger cargo ships. Savannah has the fourth-busiest container port in the U.S. and is one of the Port of Charleston's biggest competitors.