Dredging Project Reaches Midway Point in Savannah
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has completed outer harbor dredging at the Port of Savannah, marking the midpoint of the
Savannah Harbor Expansion Project (SHEP).
SHEP recently received $49 million in President Trump's FY 2018 budget request to Congress. Georgia's congressional delegation is working to increase funding to $100 million per year, the amount needed to complete the project in a timely manner.
A study by the Corps of Engineers estimates that once the project is complete, the deepening of the harbor will result in a net benefit of $282 million in transportation savings for shippers and consumers per year. According to the Corps' benefit-to-cost ratio, each dollar spent on construction will yield $7.30 in net benefits to the nation's economy.
Over the next 10 years, GPA will invest approximately $2 billion in new cranes and terminal infrastructure to handle expanding cargo volumes.
Deepening the harbor will allow Neo-Panamax vessels to take on heavier loads and transit the Savannah River with greater scheduling flexibility. Larger vessels also burn less fuel than multiple smaller ships, allowing for additional cost savings by using larger vessels. By reducing transportation expenses for American producers, the larger, more efficient ships reduce the cost of delivering goods to foreign markets.
The first half of the project deepened the outer harbor to 49 feet at low tide (56 feet at high tide). The inner harbor channel will be expanded from its current low-tide depth, 42 feet, to 47 feet (54 feet at high tide).