One Year and Growing: Union Pacific's Port Houston On-Dock Service Offers Speed to Market

Aerial of Barbours Cut Container Terminal | MR

Aerial of Barbours Cut Container Terminal courtesy of Port Houston.

The positive momentum continues to roll a year into Union Pacific’s Port Houston on-dock rail service, helping customers’ goods move more efficiently to their destination.

The service, enabling intermodal containers to be loaded onto rail cars from cargo ships at Port Houston and shipped directly to inland terminals without being trucked, was announced May 2023. By December of that year, it expanded to four additional inland markets and in March 2024, the service expanded to two more markets. In total, the service provides customers rail access from Barbours Cut Container Terminal at Port Houston to Chicago, Dallas, Denver, El Paso, Kansas City, Laredo, Los Angeles, Memphis, Oakland, Phoenix and Salt Lake City.

The on-dock solution saves customers’ time, reduces greenhouse gas emissions by taking trucks off the highways and simplifies the end-to-end supply chain for customers. It eliminates the need for containers to be trucked approximately 30 miles from the port to the nearest rail facility in Houston for loading onto rail cars, reducing highway congestion in the Houston area.

“It’s a win-win any time we can increase speed to market for our customers and grow with them,” said Kenny Rocker, Union Pacific’s executive vice president-Marketing and Sales. “We are excited about growing our presence in the Houston market and the service’s continued potential.”

Port Houston is the largest Gulf Coast intermodal container port, handling 73% of U.S. Gulf Coast container traffic, and is an essential economic engine for the Houston region, the state of Texas and the U.S.

“The addition of on-dock intermodal services has opened up new markets for Port Houston’s customers and enhanced efficient cargo movement through our terminals,” said John Moseley, chief commercial officer at Port Houston. “We appreciate Union Pacific’s commitment to Houston and look forward to continuing to work together to provide the important services our customers need.”

Port of Houston On-Dock Map | MR

Union Pacific’s service from the Barbours Cut Container Terminal at Port Houston offers access to multiple metropolitan areas on our rail network.

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