River shipping swells up to 62 percent in Western Pa.

This article originally appeared on TribLive.

An improving economy and the opening of a new battery of coke ovens along the Monongahela River are spurring the sharp increase in river shipping, experts said on Monday.

The Port of Pittsburgh Commission, citing Army Corps of Engineers data, said companies moved 12.7 million tons of goods on the Allegheny, Monongahela and Ohio rivers in May, up 62 percent from May 2012.

That represents the highest May total since 2008, before the recession. Each of the previous seven months was the highest for that month since at least 2008 as well.

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