American Shipper

Savannah port director urges support for deeper harbor

Savannah port director urges support for deeper harbor

   Deepening Savannah’s harbor is not only “critical to the industries along the river, but to the future vitality and staying power of our economy,” Doug J. Marchand, executive director of the Georgia Ports Authority said Thursday in an annual “state of the port” speech.

   The port is planning to deepen its harbor from 42 feet to 48 feet. Marchand said the environmental studies, mitigation modeling and economic analysis required for dredging will be complete and ready for public comment early next year.

   He said the deepening would be the largest and most expensive civil works project the local community had ever undertaken, and urged support for the proposal.

   Marchand also outlined a series of “road, rail and bridge projects that must be completed to move cargo those last critical miles to and from the waterfront.”

   The largest and most critical project, Marchand said, is the Jimmy DeLoach Parkway Extension, a 2.9-mile roadway between the existing parkway and State Route 307 which would provide direct access to the port for existing distribution centers, as well as proposed distribution centers.