SCHUMER: AFTER EXTENDED DELAY, OGDENSBURG BRIDGE AND PORT AUTHORITY’S LONG-AWAITED PORT DEEPENING & EXPANSION PROJECT TO BEGIN IN 2021
Schumer Ensured Federal Funding Awarded In 2017 Remained Locked In Place While OBPA & NYSDOT Secured Additional Dollars To Complete Full-Scope Of Project
$6.9M Expansion Will Decrease Shipping Costs & Unlock New Biz Opportunities At The Port By Deepening Ogdensburg Harbor, Extending Dock Wall & Creating New Storage Facilities
Schumer: Full Funding Ensures Port Of Ogdensburg Is Open For Business!
U.S. Senator Charles E. Schumer today announced that after an extended delay, the Ogdensburg Bridge & Port Authority’s (OBPA) long-awaited port deepening and expansion project will begin in 2021. After initially securing funding from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) to deepen the Ogdensburg Harbor’s channel in 2017, the development was delayed as OBPA sought additional funds to complete the second phase of the project, which includes dock wall and facility storage expansion. When a threat of having federal funding withdrawn emerged, Senator Schumer worked with USACE keep the federal funding locked in place while OBPA successfully secured additional funding from the New York State Department of Transportation (NYSDOT).
“Whether it’s more business or increased shipments from current customers, the Ogdensburg Harbor will now, quite literally, be more open for business,” said Senator Schumer. “I was proud to work side-by-side with OBPA, NYSDOT and USACE to ensure that federal funding for this project was not withdrawn while additional funding was secured. With full funding now locked in place, this long awaited project will allow Port of Ogdensburg to continue to play a key role in the region’s economy.”
The project consists of two phases. Phase One of the project includes deepening the Ogdensburg Harbor to ease congestion, reduce shipping costs and unlock new business opportunities. Currently, sediment backlog and shallow waters at the harbor has made the port’s main dock inaccessible for larger vessels and adds tens of thousands of dollars to shipping costs. Funding for this project is costs shared 65% federal and 35% non-federal, with the total project costing $6.9 million. Phase Two of the project would add 500 feet to the port’s west side dock wall to create a second vessel berth at seaway depth and expand storage facilities for increased cargo. Taken together, the deepening, dock upgrades and storage expansion would enable two or more ships to come to port and unload their cargo. Currently, the port can handle only one ship at a time.
Planning for the project dates back to 2011 when USACE initiated a feasibility study and determined that there was federal interest in deepening the port. Sen. Schumer visited Ogdensburg in 2016 to push for federal approval of the project and sent a letter to the acting assistant secretary of the Army for civil works urging him to sign the pending Project Partnership Agreement with the OBPA, which was ultimately finalized in 2017. Over the past several years, Schumer worked with OBPA, NYSDOT and USACE to keep federal funding from being withdrawn while additional funds were secured to complete both phases of the project.
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