Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Newport, Hueneme Awarded Redevelopment Grants

By Mark Edward Nero

The Oxnard Harbor District, which operates the Port of Hueneme, has been awarded $12.3 million by the US Department of Transportation for maritime cargo terminal redevelopment the port said Oct. 30.

The grant, given through the federal National Infrastructure Investments program, provides funding to improve the intermodal infrastructure at the Port of Hueneme, including the deepening of two berths, the strengthening of a wharf, modernizing cargo handling infrastructure, and extending on-dock rail.

The completed project is expected to extend the useful life of the wharf up to 30 years, allow vessels with 36-foot drafts to serve the port, and also stimulate subsequent investment from private terminal operators. “In all my years in government I’ve not seen a more important step forward, a step full of promise for our community’s economic future, Harbor Commission Vice President Manuel Lopez said.

The Port of Hueneme’s grant was one of 39 awards totaling $500 million in funding to be made in the current round of investments, and one of only three for West Coast ports. The Port of San Diego was awarded $10 million toward the $22 million revamp of the Tenth Avenue Marine Terminal, and Oregon’s Port of Newport received $2 million, with the funds earmarked to help build an international deep-water marine terminal with intermodal (marine/river/highway) access.

The Port of Newport project consists of the creation of several acres of usable terminal surface to provide businesses a viable location for receiving or preparing loads for international or domestic shipment.

In addition to the port grants, the 60-year-old Mukilteo Multimodal Ferry Terminal in Washington was awarded a $10 million grant to help pay for a $100 million project to replace the current aging and seismically deficient terminal and relocate a new, integrated, multimodal facility east to a vacant brownfield.

The new terminal is expected to improve operations and multimodal connections and safety, as well as restore community access to the waterfront.