Port of Harlingen Receives $3.9 Million in Federal Grant Funding
The Port of Harlingen Authority was awarded $3,937,500 from U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”) Port Infrastructure Development Grant Program (“PIDP”) on Oct. 26. Funding will be used to renovate the port’s main dock and related facilities.
“We are more than excited to be awarded these grant funds, which will go toward making critical improvements to our Port and is a major step in our plan to expand opportunities and the demands of our current operations,” said Port Director Walker Smith. “These funds will allow us to undertake much needed rehabilitation of our main dock and mooring structures throughout our turning basin. It not only gives us an opportunity to modernize our port, but also increases accessibility, sustainability, and safety for those who move goods through The Port of Harlingen. We will continue to work hard to bring funding to the area to improve our overall competitiveness and bring new opportunities for our surrounding communities and we thank everyone who supported us in seeking this grant.”
The Port Infrastructure Development Program is a discretionary grant program administered by the U.S. Maritime Administration. Funds for the PIDP are awarded on a competitive basis to projects that improve the safety, efficiency, or reliability of the movement of goods into, out of, around, or within a port. In FY2022, the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law (“BIL”) appropriated $450 million to the PIDP. An additional $234 million was made available to the program under FY2022 Consolidated Appropriations Act. Therefore, a total of $684,310,000 of funding was available to make awards under the FY 2022 PIDP grant program. The Port submitted their application in May 2022 for that round of funding.
“The Port of Harlingen is a critical component of our district and region’s economic well-being. I am proud to make this announcement on behalf of our community and I look forward to the ribbon-cutting ceremony of this historic infrastructure improvement project,” said Congresswoman Mayra Flores in a press release announcing the grant. “Given our strategic location on the Gulf Coast, ensuring our ports are running efficiently and at full capacity benefits us all.”
In addition to grant funds, the port is investing a local match of 25% of the project cost. Dock rehabilitation also opens more capabilities at The Port of Harlingen. The project is critical to maintain and expand current shipping services for existing port customers, provide transportation options for new and emerging port customers, and to enable the creation of a new Container on Barge ("COB") service, and facilitate transportation the Marine Highways.
“The proposed project supports our national, state, and regional logistics chain by providing crucial repair and maintenance of two of the port’s marine docks and mooring structures, which are used for the import and export of approximately 83 percent of this Port’s total annual tonnage,” Alan Johnson Port of Harlingen Commission Chair said. “Funding would allow for continued use and expansion of commodities moving through the port and the region. This is an exciting endeavor that is just the first domino in a series of projects the port has planned.”