The project aim was to develop, design and set effective Hinterland intermodal freight transport nodes -Dryports that are fully integrated with the Gateway's freight handling systems, to adapt a public concept to a private sector model, to monitor CO2 effects and to integrate Dryports into the EU Motorways of the Sea concept.
In a fully developed Dryport concept the seaport controls operations, but the terminal itself must not serve only one port as it can (should) be part of a larger network. Dryports are used more consciously than inland terminals in order to deal with increased (container) flows, with a focus on security and control through information and communication systems. The real difference is that the gates of the port are extended and that the forwarder sees the Dryport as an adequate interface towards port and shipping lines.
International trade has grown immensely since GATT started in 1950. The increase in international trade has exceeded the growth in the global production. A consequence is that more goods are transported over larger distances and more frequently than ever before.
Further action is needed to achieve the objectives of the EU White Paper on common transport policy. These objectives call for a return of the alternative modes to their 1998 share by 2010, and then increase this from then onwards. The increase in greenhouse gas emissions from transport threatens the Kyoto targets. Therefore, additional policy initiatives and instruments are needed.' ( quotes E.E.A. Copenhagen). Dryports was one of those instruments.
Our industry around the North Sea must constantly develop its logistics systems in order to meet the geographic distance handicap to the rest of Europe. For exporting companies the added cost for this transport handicap equals to the labour cost. The necessity of controlling these logistics costs is therefore a question of survival.
Parallel to this, the logistics systems create a large environmental impact that needs to be effectuated both on a short term and long-term basis. Links and nodes for efficient transport and logistics operations are essential in this vision. Effective links between roads, rail connections and waterways and between nodes & terminals lead to increased logistics efficiency, lower costs, higher capital effectiveness and improved competition possibilities for the northern region in Europe.
The bulk of the freight flows that is transported by road goes to and from the immediate Hinterland of major Gateways. The dryport concept aimed at these short and mid range road transport flows. New was to achieve a modal shift from road to rail and/or inland waterways by integrating gateway freight handling systems with hinterland nodes based on smart IT solutions.