In the press

Hallett Dock is on the Move

published in North Star Port, Fall-Winter 2004. A publication of the Duluth Port Seaway Authority.
Sand from Erie Pier will be used to cap the Hallett's Stryker Bay site that was polluted many years ago by heavy industry.

Since Hallett Dock Company was established in 1961 to store and handle bulk commodities for US Steel's cement and steel plants, the company has been a fixture of the Duluth-Superior maritime industry. From its beginning, Hallett has been on the move. Its expansion has been gradual over the past four decades as it grew from a one-dock operation to four maritime facilities, and from a handful of products to handling a wide variety of bulk and liquid cargoes for American, Canadian, and European customers.

The Company is on the move again, not with expansion, but rather contraction as it consolidates its operations of its four docks with Dock No. 5 in Duluth and Dock No. 8 in Superior, Wis.

Hallett's No. 6 & 7, upriver docks, are part of a 255-acre superfund site, polluted from heavy industrial activity beginning in the late 1800s up until Hallett's arrival in the late 1960s. To accommodate the environmental remediation of the site, Hallett agreed to sell both slips No. 6 & 7 and Dock No. 7 to the parties responsible for the pollution.

Port Director Adolph Ojard (left) reviews Hallett's plans with Mike McCoshen, Hallett general manager, and Ron Johnson, Port Authority trade development director.

The loss of half of its acreage to accommodate the remediation of contaminated sediments provided Hallett with the opportunity to use its innovative management style to deal with the challenge of "shoehorning" the operation of four docks into its two remaining maritime facilities.

Company President Jerry Fryberger said, "We simply had to make the most of the resources available to us in order to continue to meet the needs of our customers. Our most valuable resource is our flexible, adaptable management style. This was developed over the decades, to address various challenges of handling a variety of cargoes ranging from limestone to bentonite clay, salt to chrome ore, sand to urea, petroleum coke to sinter feed, to meet our customers' needs. This resource coupled with the proceeds from the sale of our two docks will enable us to make numerous efficiency improvements at our two remaining docks."

These improvements include long-term lease of the Boston Yard, expanded rail infrastructure to accommodate unit trains, a new state-of-the-art rail car unloading and dust collector system, along with an enlarged concrete bulk storage pad at Duluth's Dock No. 5 and a new 2.2-million-gallon liquid storage capacity and automated scale at Superior's Dock No. 8 to accommodate barge delivery of liquid products.

Mike McCoshen, Hallett's General Manager, said, "We are excited about the future of our company meeting the challenges of "doing more with less." We have always been a nimble company, able to react immediately to a customer's individual needs. Our consolidation will actually mean an expansion of our ability to meet those needs."

Beneficial dredge material reuse

Jerry Fryberger, president, says Hallett has always had a "flexible, adaptable management style." An operations consolidation promoted by site remediation will enhance Hallett's remaining operations and make Hallett even better suited to meet its customers' needs.

The Minnesota Pollution Control Agency board approved in August a clean-up plan at the superfund site mentioned above that included permanently capping some of the contaminated sediment with sand.

XIK Corp, the lead responsible party in the cleanup, hired Service Engineering Group of Duluth to investigate the site and permit and design the project. Dredging company M.C.M. Marine, Inc., Sault Ste. Marie, Mich., in conjunction with local dredging company Marine Tech, Inc. were hired in October to begin the capping process at the former Hallett Slip 7. The sand being used for the project is from the Corps of Engineers 2004 Harbor Dredging of the East Gate Turning Basin near the Blatnik Bridge, which is washed and stored at the Port Authority's Erie Pier. Since 1979, Erie Pier has been a storage and recycling center for Duluth-Superior Harbor's dredged materials. The vast majority of dredged materials deposited at Erie Pier is clean sand and soil, most of which is eventually sold by the Port Authority to area contractors for construction fill and, in some cases, topsoil.

This project proves that beneficial uses for dredge materials can be found, providing for creative collaboration between public, academic, and private resources and promoting port environmental stewardship.

Hallett Dock Company

PO Box 16447     Duluth, MN     55816-0447
tel. (218) 628-2281     fax. (218) 628-2284     email: