The Port Everglades Navigation Improvements Project will go ahead after the Broward Country Board of County Commissioners approved a Project Partnership Agreement (PPA) with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACOE).
The project will deepen the Port’s navigation channel from 42 feet to 48-50 feet and widen narrow channel areas to take advantage of the greater economies of scale from larger container and petroleum ships.
The PPA details the requirements and responsibilities of the USACOE and Port Everglades for construction once all environmental requirements are completed.
The full deepening and widening project is designed to enable safe passage of next generation cruise, bulk, petroleum and deep draft Neo-Panamax cargo ships. As the nation’s leading gateway for trade with Latin America, Port Everglades already handles Neo-Panamax vessels from Europe and South America, but the ships must be lightly loaded, which is inefficient, especially as older fleets are being replaced.
It is anticipated that, when completed in 2029, the project will create nearly 1,500 permanent direct jobs resulting from additional cargo capacity.
Port Everglades currently generates nearly $32 billion in business annually and more than 13,000 direct jobs in South Florida. It is the region’s main seaport for receiving petroleum and jet fuel, a top container port in the state, and is one of the top three cruise ports worldwide.