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The Container Age to Present Day

Last updated date:2019/1/15

The History of the Port of Yokohama
1) The Opening of the Port:West Meets East
2) The Birth of Yokohama City and the Great Kanto Earthquake
3) Earthquake Recovery-World War 2
4) Post-war-Rapid Economic Growth
5) The Container Age to Present Day

image of Minato Mirai 21
Minato Mirai 21

Japan's sharp economic boom changed the way many of its markets worked, including the Port of Yokohama.
The Port until 1967 handled all cargo in separate units. Each ship had to be individually loaded and unloaded, an effort that took a great amount of time and manpower. The introduction of container freight (large, steel, shipping boxes) and then gantry cranes, saw a vast improvement in the safety, security, and efficiency of transporting and handling cargo. Product recipients no longer had to deal with sorting and ships were not burdened with bearing their loads after long sea voyages.
After becoming a player in the international shipping community, containers quickly became widely used and eventually became the exclusive cargo carrying methods world wide. This, as expected, had a pronounced effect on ship design and the Port of Yokohama.
Historically, the Port only catered to "conventional" freight. These facilities were vastly inefficient for container ships. In order to accommodate the future age of shipping, new container terminals had to be quickly constructed.
A plan to build a berth to handle container freight was put into action. Both Honomoku and Daikoku Piers were constructed and installed with various facilities, including gantry cranes and a container handling facility. In 1991, to accommodate of the increasing number of containers, Minami-Honmoku Pier was constructed.
Although the Port of Yokohama has been expanding into the sea since the middle of the Meiji period (1868-1912), it has done very little renovation on structures built early on (i.e. Yamanouchi Pier, Takashima Pier, and the Osanbashi district).
In order to reconstruct and renovate the waterfront area, the Port and City of Yokohama advanced the Minato Mirai 21 project and the Osanbashi Pier renovation. The Port also installed the Rinko Road, in order to improve access within the Harbor area.
The Port of Yokohama has also utilized several facilities in order to unite the population of Yokohama with the Port; these included the construction of, the Yokohama Maritime Museum, Rinko Park, Umi-no-Koen (Bayside Park), and Hakkeijima.


image of Container ship
Container ship

Typical imports of this era:


Nonferrous metal


Cars


Typical exports of this era:


Office supplies


Cars

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