Charleston Harbor Now Deepest Harbor on the East Coast

Charleston Harbor Now Deepest Harbor on the East Coast

The South Carolina Ports Authority announced on Dec. 5 the completion of the Charleston Harbor deepening project which is now considered as the deepest harbor on the East Coast.

The Charleston Harbor boasts a depth of 52 feet allowing large ships to gain access to the South Carolina Ports’ terminals at any time as well as ships filled with record imports and heavy exports to “seamlessly sail” through the Charleston Harbor to SC Ports’ terminals.

The port authority said the depth makes SC Ports “more competitive, helping to attract new ship services, first-in-calls and more cargo to South Carolina.” The harbor is also expected to support South Carolina’s economy and Southeast supply chains.

South Carolina Ports collaborated with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Charleston District, on the deepening project which cost around $580 million and was fully funded by the state and federal dollars.

The project began in 2018 with the Congress appropriating $138 million for the construction in 2019. The deepening began in the entrance channel and continued through the harbor up to the SC Ports’ three container terminals.

SC Ports President and CEO Barbara Melvin shared how the project was completed quickly, “Our deepening project was completed faster than any other project of its kind in the nation. It required tremendous dedication, collaboration and creativity from everyone involved over the past decade.”

The completion of the project was marked by the gathering of state elected leaders, Congressional members, project partners, business and maritime community leaders, and SC Ports officials.

Furthermore, SC Ports President and CEO Barbara Melvin gladly marked the achievement, “It is a truly historical moment to be celebrating this monumental achievement. Charleston Harbor has been deepened to 52 feet…With the deepest harbor on the East Coast, we can efficiently work mega container ships at any tide. This investment will bring economic success to South Carolina for generations to come.”

In addition to this, Governor Henry McMaster proudly announced that South Carolina now has the deepest harbor on the East Coast.

“South Carolina can now proudly say that we have the deepest harbor on the East Coast. The 52-foot depth gives South Carolina a major edge in recruiting new jobs and investment while announcing to the world that this is the place to do business. This was the epitome of a team effort, involving members of our federal delegation – led by U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham – the General Assembly, and the Ports Authority leadership team,” he said.

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