Port of Victoria to build barge terminal

Jessica  Rodrigo By Jessica Rodrigo

Feb. 13, 2014 at 6:01 p.m.
Updated Feb. 12, 2014 at 8:13 p.m.

Barge shipments are creating a traffic jam at the Port of Victoria.

But soon, through a new partnership, the port will be home to a barge fleeting terminal that will alleviate the problem.

"We're always looking for creative ways to get things done without spending our money or taxpayer money," Robert Loeb, navigation district commissioner, said.

The Port of Victoria and Victoria Fleet, an affiliate of Devall Towing and Boat Service of Louisiana, will host a groundbreaking ceremony Friday at the Port of Victoria South for the new terminal.

Victoria Fleet will pay for the construction and oversee the operations once it's completed.

The construction is expected to be complete in July. The terminal will span an area of 1,800 feet by 500 feet deep and will be dredged to a depth of 12 feet. It will be large enough to accommodate 50 inland barges, according to a news release.

"We are excited about working with the Port of Victoria on this project and look forward to a long-standing relationship with the Victoria community," said Matt Devall, chief financial officer for Victoria Fleet and Devall Towing in a news release.

In December, the port broke previous shipping records with more than 2 million barrels of oil from its facilities. The anticipated growth at the port requires more space, he said.

"We're getting more infrastructure, and that's important," Loeb said. "The canal is too busy."

The fleeting will provide the barges with a place to safely wait until they can unload or load their shipments.

Loeb estimated the canal is about 125 feet wide, which is enough room for two barges at a given time.



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