June 2021 Commerce Club Featuring Maxie McGuire, President, Callan Marine, LTD.

Port Bureau News,

Control Your Destiny

Image: Callan Marine dredge in the Houston Ship Channel.
Photo courtesy of Callan Marine, LTD.

“We really appreciate the opportunity, as a dredging contractor, to speak. We’re always advocating how we can work better together,” said Maxie McGuire, president of Callan Marine, LTD., in his opening comments at the Port Bureau’s Commerce Club luncheon on June 10. Speaking to attendees from the theme of “Control Your Destiny” in terms of dredging needs, McGuire named funding and early engagement as key factors for “keeping your berths full”.

Channel or dock dredging today can be a more extensive process than in the past because dredge materials are usually removed to an area that is quite distant from the dredging site. Consequently, equipment and technology have evolved to keep pace with the modern dredge process. Most dredgers are either mechanical or hydraulic. Mechanical dredgers are suited to removing hard-packed materials and working in tight areas. They utilize a “clamshell” (bucket) or backhoe for operations. Hydraulic dredges are suited to open water, moving materials through pipeline or a “hopper” that transports loads over a long distance.

Callan Marine operates four dredges, with a fifth under construction and sixth to be announced soon.


“As contractors, we love to have the certainty of funding,” explained McGuire. “It gives us the ability to see the work coming, predict, and build.”

McGuire said the federal government will have an approximately $6.8 billion budget, with $2.5 billion allocated to operation and maintenance. Historically, this represents an increase of one billion. “We’re seeing record money coming at us to deal with our infrastructure and grow.”

He also noted the potential impact of Project 11 for dredging contractors. He estimates 18 to 20 million cubic yards of material will be removed in stages through several projects in the overall process. “It will be busy and bring jobs,” McGuire said. “At Callan, we’re super excited to have something in our backyard as big as Project 11.”

Early Engagement

To get projects to the finish line efficiently, McGuire advocates getting engaged with a contractor early. Working together this way helps companies manage their value. “Everyone who moves product over water understands the value of under keel clearance. If you get draft restricted, that hits your top line and hits your bottom line,” said McGuire.

Callan Marine offers comprehensive dredging solutions for any project. The company performs dredging projects for both private and public clients by providing services to restore berthing depths for ship docks, navigation channels, or otherwise facilitate transportation on the waterways.

A lively Q&A session followed McGuire’s presentation. Topics included questions about the average number of cubic yards/day removed, current status of dredge disposal sites, inflation impacts, national dredging fleet capacity, and permitting.

Thank you to our sponsors:

Callnan Marine LTD   Enterprise Products Partners   •  Excargo  •  Kinder Morgan   •  Houston Mooring Co. Inc •    Houston Pilots     Intercontinental Terminals Company     Moran Shipping Agencies, Inc.    Red Fish Barge & Fleeting Services •   Regions Bank     Richardson Companies   Targa Resources      West Gulf Maritime Association