Foxx Announces New Marine Highway Projects
U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has designated three new Marine Highway Projects.
A Marine Highway Project is a planned service, or expansion of an existing service, on a designated Marine Highway Route, that provides new modal choices to shippers of cargo, reduces transportation costs and provides public benefits including reduced air emissions, reduced road maintenance costs and improved safety and resiliency.
The Mississippi River, previously designated as the M-55, will serve as the primary route for the Baton Rouge-New Orleans Shuttle project. Sponsored by the Port of New Orleans in partnership with the Port of Greater Baton Rouge and Seacor AMH, the proposed container-on-barge service will operate between the Ports of Greater Baton Rouge and New Orleans, reducing congestion and bridge traffic on Louisiana’s Interstate 10.
Also operating along the M-55 from Chicago to New Orleans, the proposed Illinois Intrastate Shuttle project is structured to shift about 5,500 containers in its first year of operation from congested north-south Interstate 55 to the Mississippi River. Sponsored by America’s Central Port located in Granite City, the container on barge service will provide soybean and grain shippers a new routing option.
The third service, the Lake Erie Shuttle, is a proposed route that will carry cargo for shippers between the ports of Monroe; Cleveland and Detroit. The service is sponsored by the Port of Monroe.
Foxx has also announced the availability of credit assistance for critical infrastructure projects across the U.S. through the Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) program.
A wide range of surface transportation infrastructure is eligible for TIFIA credit assistance, including highways, passenger and freight rail, public transit, intermodal freight facilities, and international bridges and tunnels.
To date, the TIFIA program has provided $22.7 billion in credit assistance to support more than $82.5 billion in transportation infrastructure investments to help build 56 major transportation projects around the country.