South Philadelphia has hundreds of acres of dormant land on the Delaware River at Southport, where the CSX and Norfolk Southern rail lines come together.
City Council listened to proposals for developing the area as a container port to bring jobs and tax dollars into the city.
One bidder for the property, John Brown of Penn Warehousing, said he could bring 1,100 good-paying jobs to the city if his offer wins.
“That marine terminal, if it’s built out to capacity, has the ability to return to the state and city about $38 million in state taxes, city taxes and job revenue and business revenue,” he said.
Philadelphia has both the perfect property and workforce to expand, said port consultant Susan Howland.
“Southport is the port of Philadelphia’s signal to the hundreds of domestic and international shippers and shipping companies who depend on the public general cargo facilities in the city of Philadelphia that there is — and will be — room to grow their business,” she said.
Officials also have suggested using the more than 200-acre property for an energy hub.