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Wednesday, June 19, 2019

Maritime Logistics Professional

April 15, 2019

Houston Widens Ship Channel

Image: Port of Houston Authority

Image: Port of Houston Authority

The Port Commission of the Port of Houston Authority has decided to accelerate widening of the Houston Ship Channel, the nation’s busiest waterway.

The Port Authority is working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) and other representatives of the federal government, as well as Port of Houston and Houston Ship Channel stakeholders, to obtain authorization and accelerated funding and completion, of a deepened and widened ship channel.

“The Houston Ship Channel is open for business for all and will continue to be,” said Port of Houston Authority Chairman, Ric Campo.

This project will be the eleventh significant widening and deepening of the channel since its conception, Houston port said.

The commission was briefed on measures to make sure widening of the entire Galveston Bay reach of the ship channel is part of the next Houston Ship Channel dredging project. The commission also directed staff to bring it proposals for Port Authority and industry funding to support this accelerated effort.

In addition, after careful consideration of interim measures to address growing traffic, the commission adopted a resolution to further maximize current two-way traffic transiting the Houston Ship Channel.

"The Houston Ship Channel is experiencing tremendous growth," said the company. Houston, the country’s No. 1 export city, is home to the largest petrochemical manufacturing complex in the Americas.

Expansion of the Panama Canal, the growth of vessel sizes, and the region’s population growth have also resulted in record container demand, both for imported consumer goods and exported manufactured products, further driving the need for improvements to the channel.