The Port of Charleston may see larger ships sail into its harbor soon, after a U.S. House Committee approved a study that looks at deepening the Charleston harbor. The South Carolina State Ports Authority wants to deepen its harbor to be able to handle larger ships that come in, and ultimately bring more business. Right now, the Port of Charleston’s channel is 47-feet, and 45-feet deep in the harbor.
With the House approval for the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to expedite the study, the Ports Authority says it will be able to better serve world trade with the expansion of the Panama Canal in 2014. SPA President and CEO Jim Newsome says “The next deepening will take Charleston beyond 45 and 47 feet, opening the port to all classes of the world’s most modern vessels under any tidal condition.”
Port officials praised Congressman Henry Brown for his work on the project. SPA Board Chairman Bill Stern calls Brown a “workhorse” for South Carolina ports and the state. Stern says Brown “understands that shipping channels are national infrastructure, essential to the nation’s economy and defense.”