U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao Announces $18 Million Infrastructure Investment in Beaumont
BEAUMONT – U.S. Department of Transportation Maritime Administration Administrator, Admiral Mark Buzby formally presented a check for $18 million to Beaumont for the Port of Beaumont Multimodal Corridor Expansion and Improvement Project. U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao on November 12, announced that the Trump Administration will invest $900 million in American infrastructure through the Better Utilizing Investments to Leverage Development (BUILD) Transportation Discretionary Grants program.
“The Administration is targeting BUILD Transportation grants to repair, rebuild, and revitalize significant infrastructure projects across the country,” said U.S. Secretary of Transportation Elaine L. Chao.
Fiscal Year 2019 BUILD Transportation grants are for investments in surface transportation infrastructure and have been awarded on a competitive basis to projects with a significant impact in their local or regional communities. BUILD funding supports roads, bridges, transit, rail, ports or intermodal transportation.
“This investment in the Port of Beaumont supports America’s national and economic security. By investing in ports, we’re strengthening the U.S. maritime industry, which supports hundreds of thousands of good paying American jobs. As homeport to three of our Ready Reserve Fleet vessels, the Port supports sealift, which ensures that the U.S. can protect itself and its interests around the globe” said Maritime Administrator Rear Admiral Mark Buzby.
The Multimodal Corridor Expansion and Improvement Project reconstructs condemned wharves 2, 3, and 4 at the Main Street Terminal 1, adds approximately 16,000 linear feet of new rail track and realigns and upgrades approximately 4,275 feet of existing rail track at the Buford Rail Yard Interchange, and replaces a deteriorated grain dock. By reconstructing wharves originally built in the 1950s that failed in 2011 due to age-related structural deterioration, the project will bring the Main Street Terminal into a state of good repair to restore dock service to handle military, breakbulk, and project cargoes. Similarly, the project will replace the grain dock, which is past its useful life.
The project increases economic competitiveness by doubling rail interchange capacity and adding general cargo handling capacity to reduce freight shipment costs and facilitate direct intermodal interchange and transfer at the Port of Beaumont, particularly for grain exports. By increasing capacity and efficiency for water-based and rail freight movement, the project decreases heavy truck traffic and emissions, aligning with safety and environmental sustainability respectively.
The program selection criteria encompassed safety, economic competitiveness, quality of life, state of good repair, environmental sustainability, innovation, and partnerships with a broad range of stakeholders.
To reflect the Administration’s ongoing effort to rebalance historic underinvestment in rural America, DOT has awarded 50% of BUILD Transportation grant funding to projects located in rural areas. For this round of BUILD grants, the maximum grant award is $25 million, and no more than $90 million can be awarded to a single State.