Fierce competition between port territories has always come down to onshore mobility issues. As a result, rail and river links are strategically important, since they are the only ways to transport goods to and from the port whilst respecting the public’s environmental concerns. The future European Transport Commissioner has made the issue a central policy plank, while there is also visible investment on the ground. Kiel (Germany) is developing the capacity to support 740 metre-long trains, while Long Beach (USA) is committed to expanding its main rail infrastructures. In Canada, the ports of Quebec and Halifax are making rail links to the centre of the country and the American Midwest a key component of efforts to develop container activity. In many cases, the choice for ports is a multimodal future, or no future at all.