Logistics & Distribution

Immediate Access to a 20.4 Million Person Market

The Bradenton Area, which comprises all of Manatee County, is located on the south side of Tampa Bay.  It is 50 miles west of Tampa on I-75; and by way of four-lane I-75 and I-4, the area is within 120 miles of Orlando and less than 250 miles from Miami on I-75. Manatee County and adjacent Sarasota County employ more than 9,000 people within the logistics & distribution industry cluster.

Leading companies that are rooted in this industry and call the Bradenton Area home include Tropicana Products Inc., Bealls Inc., and SYSCO West Coast Florida Inc. Amazon constructed a $200 million distribution facility just north of Manatee County in 2013.

Accessibility for logistics and distribution companies not only include interstate access, but also mainline rail provided by CSX Transportation, three international airports within an hour’s drive and close proximity to Port Manatee, the closest United States deepwater port to the Panama Canal.

60 Minute Market

  • Population: 4.8 Million
  • Households: 1.9 Million
  • Online Purchases (once in 30 days): 2.9 Million

180 Minute Market

  • Population: 15.3 Million
  • Households: 6.1 Million
  • Online Purchase (once in 30 days): 5.9 Million
Travel times from the Bradenton Area

Port Manatee

Port Manatee is one of Florida’s largest and fastest growing deepwater seaports, serving as an international gateway between U.S. and global markets.

Located in the eastern Gulf of Mexico at the entrance to Tampa Bay, Port Manatee is regarded as the closest U.S. deepwater seaport to the Panama Canal, and is the shortest route between Mexican and Central American production facilities, providing easy access to Florida’s nearly 20 million consumers. The Florida International Gateway includes nearly 5,000 acres of land adjacent to Port Manatee and features excellent customized economic development incentives and expedited permitting.

A robust consumer base of 8 million Florida residents live within a two-hour drive of Port Manatee, and the majority of Florida’s nearly 113 million annual visitors may be found within a three-hour drive.

Located in Foreign Trade Zone 169, Port Manatee offers exceptional highway and interstate connections with 60-mph access to Interstate 75 and Interstate 275. Trucks leaving Port Manatee reach I-75 and I-275 in less than four minutes via U.S. Highway 41.

The port and its partners move approximately 8 million tons of bulk, bulkbreak and container and project cargo each year. Commodities include fresh produce, forestry products, petroleum products, citrus juice products, fertilizer, steel, aluminum, cement, aggregate, automobiles and more.

Port Manatee has more than 1 million square feet of public warehouse and office space, featuring 207,000 square feet of refrigerated space. The port offers nearly 1.5 miles of berthing for ships with two Gottwald HMK 6407 mobile harbor cranes for efficient movement of commodities.

Port Manatee’s Class III railroad connects to CSX rail lines with two switch engines (1,600 and 1,700 horsepower) and nine miles of standard gauge track, 19 switches, nine crossings and 300-plus rail car capacity. The railroad can operate 24 hours a day to accommodate customer needs. Carload Shipments reach major eastern U.S. cities in 3-6 days. (Source: CSX Transportation)

Key Commodities
Each year, Port Manatee moves approximately 8 million tons of cargo representing a diverse range of import and export commodities.

Primary Imports

  • Tropical fruits and vegetables
  • Citrus juices
  • Natural gas
  • Refined petroleum products
  • Forest products
  • Project cargo
  • Aluminum and other non-ferrous metals
  • Steel
  • Aggregates
  • Cement
  • Finished fertilizer products
  • Corn
  • Salt

Primary Exports

  • Finished phosphate products
  • Citrus juices
  • Construction and road-building equipment
  • Used vehicles
  • LNG heat exchangers
  • Power generation units

Port Development Encouragement Zone

The Land Development Code establishes a Planned Development Encouragement Zone (PDEZ) Zoning District. This district encourages port-compatible development on vacant lands in the vicinity of Port Manatee. This could include manufacturing, warehouses, distribution centers and a range of other light and heavy industrial uses. To date, four areas totaling over 1,000 acres have been rezoned to the new PDEZ district.

The PDEZ provides the ability for a landowner to get advance approval for a variety of port-related uses. Once the PDEZ re-zoning is approved and the list of the various potential uses with the rezone, the property owner can then market their property for the list of available uses. Once a decision is made to develop the property, the process will be administrative.

Source: Port Manatee
Port Manatee is one of the largest deepwater seaports in Florida and the closest to the Panama Canal
4.5 million people within a 60-minute drive of the Bradenton area
I-75 and I-275 run through Manatee County
CSX Transportation provides rail to Manatee County
Maxwell Stewart

Want to learn more?

Contact Max Stewart
Vice President, Economic Development
[email protected]

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