Two projects to help larger cargo vessels better navigate the Seattle-Tacoma harbor have advanced to the design phase.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers have signed design agreements with the ports of Seattle and Tacoma for the Seattle Navigation Improvement Project and the Tacoma Harbor Navigation Improvement Project, the Northwest Seaport Alliance announced Dec. 12.
The project in Tacoma includes designing the deepening of Blair Waterway channel and potentially using the dredged material at the East Commencement Habitat Opportunity (formerly Saltchuk) area, while the Seattle project calls for deepening the West Waterway Channel Deepening Project to minus-57 feet mean lower low water.
“This deepening project fits into our comprehensive work to modernize the Blair Waterway which has included the Husky Terminal Modernization project, crane raising at Pierce County Terminal and new Super Post-Panamax cranes located at Husky and Washington United Terminals,” Port of Tacoma Commission President and NWSA Co-Chair Deanna Keller said.
Port of Seattle Commission President and NWSA Co-Chair Sam Cho said the West Waterway Channel Deepening Project is critical to the gateway’s future competitiveness and driving economic activity throughout the region.
“The deepening,” Cho said, “ensures that ultra-large vessels have unrestricted access when calling Terminal 5 and that cargo and job opportunities remain strong in our harbor for decades to come.”