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Large projects are underway at Port Everglades that will have a major effect on Hollywood and the surrounding region for years.
The Southport Turning Notch extension project will allow Port Everglades to handle more cargo. This project involves a turnaround area for cargo ships will be lengthened from 900 feet to a total of 2400 feet. This will allow for up to five new cargo ship docks. It means the Port will be getting five new Super Post-Panamax gantry cranes. This is located in Hollywood.
“This is being done because Port Everglades is at capacity for cargo ship berthing,” said Ellen Kennedy, spokesperson for the Port. “We need the additional cargo berths to be able to handle higher volumes of containerized cargo.”
The project will be complete by the end of 2017. It will cost $182 million and it being funded by the State of Florida Department of Transportation and and Port user fees. It will create about 3,000 construction jobs and will support over 5,500 local and regional jobs.
Also, there will be a new Intermodal Container Transfer Facility at Port Everglades. It being built by the Florida East Coast Railway (FEC). Currently the FEC rail yard is in Fort Lauderdale on 12 acres. This new rail facility will be located in Hollywood on 42.5 acres and be able to handle more rail cargo. It is in the Southport section of Port Everglades. It will be the first on-port rail yard in the United States to process both domestic and international cargo. Broward County donated the land valued $19 million. The County’s Port Everglades Department is a self-supporting Enterprise Fund that does not rely on local tax money. The FEC is investing $53 million to build the facility which it will operate. It is a public- private partnership and is expected to be completed in July 2014, according to Kennedy.
Port Everglades is working with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to deepen and widen the Port’s navigational channels from 42 to 50 feet. The Project involves deepening and widening the Outer Entrance Channel from an existing 45-foot project depth over a 500-foot channel width to a 57-foot depth with an 800-foot channel width, deepening the Inner Entrance Channel and Main Turning Basin from 42 feet to 50 feet, and widening the channels within the Port to increase the margin of safety for ships transiting to berth. The total cost is estimated to be $320 million, including a $131 million investment by the Port. A preliminary benefit/cost analysis by the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers determined that there will be a $1.56 return for every dollar invested. This widening and deepening project will create 5,862 construction jobs.
Port Everglades is expected to be at full use in 2029. Once everything is complete, it will take time for more cargo business to come into the Port, according to Kennedy.
Also, the McIntosh Road Loop project in Southport is complete. It will allow easier access for truckers into the container cargo terminals at Port Everglades. It is a right hand turn only loop and so it is providing easier access so truckers don’t have to make left hand turns. The will make right hand turns only which is safer and more efficient.