Kinder Morgan Energy Partners said that operations are underway at phase one of its 185-acre Battleground Oil Specialty Terminal Co. project on the Houston Ship Channel.
Twenty of the 51 storage tanks built during the first phase of construction are being placed into service this month, and the remaining tanks will come online during the next six months.
A two-berth ship dock and 12 barge berths are also slated to be in service this month.
“We are pleased commercial operations have begun which provide the market with a unique, deepwater terminaling solution that provides high-speed loading and improved barge and ship access to the Texas Gulf Coast for the export and import of various refined products,” John Schlosser, president of Kinder Morgan Terminals, said in a statement.
The project is a joint venture of Kinder Morgan, which owns 55 percent and is the operator, and TransMontaigne Partners. The project, which cost almost $500 million,can handle sulfur diesel, residual fuels and other black oil terminal services.
Phase two of the construction is also underway and includes building six additional, 150,000-barrel, ultra low sulfur diesel tanks, additional pipeline connections and high-speed loading at a rate of 25,000 barrels per hour. BOSTCO expects phase two to begin service in the fourth quarter of 2014.
The BOSTCO project is employing approximately 750 local contractors during construction and about 75 full-time employees have been hired to operate the facility.