Jaxport proposes $125 million for capital projects next year

jaxport new logo 300x168 - Jaxport proposes $125 million for capital projects next year
Jaxport is proposing $125.7 million in capital project spending in the next fiscal year, a budget prioritized on deepening the St. Johns River to allow larger vessels to visit the port, a new container terminal to handle volumes from the deep-water vessels and berth improvements and rehabilitations.

Almost $90 million of the proposed capital spending will be funded by the state, while about $13 million will come from the federal government. Tenants will chip in $3 million, and Jaxport will be responsible for the almost $20 million remaining.

Jaxport is well underway on work to deepen the first five miles of its shipping channel, and it will receive almost $26 million from the Florida Department of Transportation in August for work on the second phase of Contract B, which will deepen miles five through eight. Contract C to deepen miles eight through 11 is expected to be awarded this year.

Jaxport has not expressed interest in funding the deepening of miles 11 through 13, which reaches the TraPac container terminal on Dames Point. Instead, it reached an agreement in March with SSA Marine to co-fund the development of a new international container terminal on Blount Island at 11 miles.

The agreement requires SSA to pay $129.7 million, notably the purchase of three new cranes and a $28 million contribution to the harbor deepening project. An up-front payment of $16 million this year will also help Jaxport make its $46 million contribution to the deepening project in August. The agreement also requires Jaxport to spend $109 million improving berths at the terminal.

Jaxport forecasted almost $30 million in operating income next year, down from $31 million last year.

The next step for the proposed budget is to go before the Mayor’s Budget Review Committee June 26.

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