The Port of Galveston announced today that it has received a grant of $10 million from the Economic Development Administration (EDA) for port improvements and harbor redevelopment in the Pier 14 – 18 area of the Port. Parts of the Port’s east end were in disrepair and suffered additional damage from Hurricane Ike.
The Pier 14-18 area is a critical portion of the Port’s overall long-term development. The Port will use the grant award to leverage other funds to complete the revitalization and rejuvenation of the east end to meet client needs. Refurbishment of old public docks, now severely damaged from Hurricane Ike, is a key component of a long-term comprehensive economic development strategy to enhance the region’s success and support creation of higher paying jobs.
The current slip configuration at Pier 14 constructed in 1948 cannot handle today’s large vessels calling at the Port. The grant monies will aid in modernizing the east end facilities enabling cargo to move more efficiently, increase productivity and stimulate cargo opportunities for the port. Redevelopment plans will fill in the slips at Pier 14 with approximately 600,000 cubic yards of material resulting in more than doubling the uplands area that will be used for cargo storage and handling. Additionally, a new 1,100 foot deep water channel side berth connecting Pier 10 and Pier 16/18 will also be constructed. This additional area and berth length will result in increased ship calls and labor hours to handle the cargo transshipped through this area.
“The Port of Galveston is extremely appreciative of this funding, which will be used to improve areas of the port that suffered significant damage as a result of Hurricane Ike,” said Port of Galveston Director Steve Cernak. “These funds are desperately needed to revitalize the port’s operations and will allow us to meet the needs of our customers and grow our business.”
“The Port is grateful to the Texas delegation, Senator John Cornyn, Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison and Representative Ron Paul for their efforts on our behalf in obtaining this critical funding for the Port’s infrastructure needs. In addition, Mr. Pedro Garza of the Economic Development Administration and his staff in Austin helped Port staff in assembling the necessary information to make a compelling case for the award of this funding.” stated Board of Trustees of the Galveston Wharves Chairman Gerald Sullivan. “also staffs at the Houston-Galveston Area Council, Galveston City Manager, Steve LeBlanc, and Jeff Sjostrom of the Galveston Economic Development Partnership, worked closely with the Port to guide the application through the process and were instrumental to our success in obtaining this funding.”