The Massachusetts Port Authority has secured $35 million in federal funding to go toward the Boston Harbor dredging project, Massport announced Tuesday.
The multiphase dredging project, which is about 30 percent complete, is a $350 million partnership between the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the commonwealth and Massport. The maintenance dredging of the inner harbor was completed in December 2017 and the deepening of the main channels began last July.
The project will deepen the outer harbor channel to 51 feet, the main shipping channel to 47 feet and Massport’s reserve channel, where Conley Container Terminal is located, to 47 feet, which will allow the terminal to handle up to 12,000-TEU vessels.
“States up and down the East Coast are investing in their ports to accommodate bigger ships,” Sen. Edward Markey, D-Mass., said in a press release. “Investing in the Port of Boston ensures our local industries, manufacturers and workers are competitive in an increasingly globalized economy. This strong federal investment in this dredging project will help further upgrade the harbor in order to accommodate more and larger ships, to bring in more jobs, more investment and more economic prosperity.”
An additional $500 million of planned landside infrastructure investments are underway and are supported by a $42 million U.S. DOT FASTLANE grant and $107.5 million from Massachusetts. Massport’s Board of Directors approved in October a $45 million order of three new ship-to-shore cranes scheduled to be delivered in late 2020. Conley Terminal improvements also include the construction of two 50-foot berths, expanded refrigerated storage and new in-and-out gate facilities.
“Investments we make today into the Port of Boston and the Conley Container Terminal are essential for New England to remain an important player in the global economy for years to come,” Massport Acting CEO John Pranckevicius said.