176 Concord Street, P.O. Box 22287, Charleston, SC 29413-2287
Contact: Erin Dhand, Manager, Corporate Communications and Community Affairs
Telephone: 843-577-8121 • Fax: 843-577-8127 • e-mail: EDhand@scspa.com
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Preconstruction Engineering and Design Agreement signed; appropriations bill passes with funding for key Port projects
CHARLESTON, SC – DECEMBER 18, 2015 – This week’s signing of the Preconstruction Engineering and Design Agreement and passage of the omnibus appropriations bill with construction funding for Charleston marked significant milestones for the 52-foot Charleston Harbor Deepening Project.
Wednesday evening South Carolina Ports Authority (SCPA) and U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Charleston District (USACE) signed the Design Agreement, an important step marking the official beginning of the Project’s Preconstruction Engineering and Design Phase (PED).
PED is the final major phase of the deepening process before construction begins, with work activities to include ship simulation studies, refinement of cost estimates, coastal monitoring and analysis of beneficial use of dredged material. Utilizing initial federal funding appropriated in July, PED work is already underway and is expected to be substantially completed by the end of next year.
“The container shipping industry’s deployment of big ships is evident, and the Southeast needs a harbor deeper than 50 feet to accommodate fully-loaded post-Panamax container ships,” said SCPA president and CEO Jim Newsome. “At 52 feet, SCPA will be able to handle vessels of this size without tidal restriction and continue volume growth above the national average. We thank the USACE for their tireless efforts and look forward to the timely completion of PED followed by significant progress on construction by the end of the decade.”
The Deepening Project also received positive news today with Congress’s passage of the omnibus appropriations bill. The bill includes necessary funding for construction of harbor deepening, as well as operations and maintenance dollars, that allow the Project to continue moving forward without delay.
About South Carolina Ports Authority
South Carolina Ports Authority (SPCA), established by the state’s General Assembly in 1942, owns and operates public seaport facilities in Charleston, Georgetown and Greer, handling international commerce valued at more than $63 billion annually while receiving no direct taxpayer subsidy. An economic development engine for the state, Port operations facilitate 187,200 statewide jobs and generate nearly $53 billion annual economic activity. Home to the Southeast’s deepest port, SCPA is the industry leader in delivering speed-to-market, seamless processes and flexibility to ensure reliable operations, big ship handling, efficient market reach and environmental responsibility. For more information on SCPA, please visit http://www.scspa.com/