The US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) has awarded a $92m contract to Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company to improve the Corpus Christi Ship Channel (CCSC) at the Port of Corpus Christi.
As part of the construction contract, Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company will deepen and widen CCSC from the Gulf of Mexico to Harbor Island.
The depth of the ship channel is expected to increase from -47ft mean lower low water (MLLW) to -54ft MLLW from the jetties at the channel’s entrance to Harbor Island.
The channel’s depth will be extended up to the Gulf of Mexico to -56ft MLLW.
The award of the contract follows a competitive bid issued by USACE for the CCSC deepening project, which is part of the port’s Channel Improvement Project (CIP).
Port of Corpus Christi Commission chairman Charles Zahn said: “The award of this first dredging contract is without a doubt the most important development we will see in 2019.
“Building critical infrastructure for the energy sector is our primary mission and will allow larger vessels access to much-needed export facilities, safely and responsibly.”
USACE’s Fiscal Year (FY) 2019 Work Plan, which was unveiled in November, comprises additional funding of $59m for the CIP.
The funding has brought the total amount of federal grant awarded for the project to $95m.
Port Corpus Christi, the fourth largest port in the US in terms of tonnage, is strategically situated on the western Gulf of Mexico. It is currently equipped with a 36-mile, 47ft-deep MLLW channel.