Port Manatee’s Berth 12 dredging project – the final piece of the Tampa Bay port’s 11-year, $200 million expansion – enters its third week with 25 percent of the project complete.
The 1,584-foot berth will be dredged to a depth of 41 feet at mean-low-water and is on target for completion in October.
“This sends a message to the industry and opens the door to advance Port Manatee’s future in containerized shipping,” said the port’s Executive Director David L. McDonald PPM®. “To attract class A carriers, we have to offer a class A facility.”
Great Lakes Dredge and Dock, Co.’s dredge California – one of the most powerful hydraulic dredges operating in the United States – is pumping more than 1.1 million cubic yards of dredged material through nearly three miles of slurry pipes to a spoil disposal site at the rate of 40-thousand gallons per minute.
The new berth can accommodate Panamax-sized vessels and sits adjacent to a planned 52-acre container terminal, aimed at attracting new cargoes expected at Gulf of Mexico and East Coast ports once the Panama Canal expansion is complete in 2014.
Port Manatee is the closest U.S. deepwater seaport to the canal and shares a strategic alliance with the Panama Canal Authority.