Bakersfield · Real Estate

Kern Co. lawmakers clear path for Mojave to launch “inland port” to aid supply chain

Mojave will soon be home to California’s first-ever inland port, supporting supply chain woes by handling of incoming goods from the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach.

Tuesday, the Kern County Board of Supervisors designated a vacant plot of land in Mojave as the Mojave Inland Port, at the request of landowner Pioneer Partners.

The port will sit on 410 acres at the intersection of Highway 15 and Highway 58. The property is also bisected by the Lone Pine Branch of the Union Pacific railroad and is adjacent to the Mojave Air and Space Port.

Morgan Hill of Pioneer Partners said the port will be capable of processing 2.6 million containers annually, which is about 10 percent of what the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach handle. 

“Loaded container ships would come into the berths at LA and Long Beach, offload canisters onto shuttle trains, which would push these canisters 90 miles up the track to Mojave, where tractor trailers would be waiting for them,” Hill said. “Immediately offload them onto the tractor trailers for their final destination – pretty simple solution.” 

Direct ship to rail loaded, double-stack container trains could arrive at the port in units that are up to two miles long. Empty shipping containers will be relocated from highway trucks or the on-site storage area onto trains for the return trip to the coastal ports. 

Pioneer Partners expects the facility to handle between 800-1,800 trucks daily in the opening phases, and once the site is fully operational it will be able to handle 3,600 trucks every day. 

The port is projected to have a $500 million economic impact on the state. 

Kern County will benefit from an estimated $73 million increase to its tax base. The port is also expected to create 2,675 jobs in Kern County. 

“I see this as a win-win across the board from businesses to consumers and anyone else who relies on the timely delivery of even the most ordinary household goods that we all generally take for granted, except when we’re not able to get them,” said Supervisor Zack Scrivner. “This development isn’t just about the movement of goods. It’s about the promise of opportunity, I think, for the folks in Kern County.”

Pioneer Partners estimates construction on the port project to commence in 2023 with the site being fully operational in 2024.

Daniel Gligich is a reporter for The San Joaquin Valley Sun, focusing on Fresno State Athletics and the southern San Joaquin Valley. Email him at daniel.gligich@sjvsun.com.