The Channel Improvement Project Phase 1 is a US Army Corps of Engineers project to widen portions of the Ship Channel and deepen (from -47’ to -54’ MLLW) from the Gulf of Mexico through the Inner Harbor. This project was authorized by Congress in 2007, is fully permitted, and is being funded in phases. The US Army Corps of Engineers awarded the first construction contract for this work in the channel reach from the Gulf of Mexico to Harbor Island in February, 2019; dredging began in April of 2019 and will be complete within a year.
The Port is also seeking a separate regulatory permit from the US Army Corps of Engineers to deepen the outer reach of the Ship Channel (from the Gulf of Mexico to Harbor Island) to -75’. This incremental deepening would allow multiple Port customers who will utilize the docks on Harbor Island to fully load Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs).