Florida Port Dredging Project Hinges on Federal Funding
But federal funding for the project is still uncertain.
"[T]ransportation dollars are already playing a huge role in the port's expansion. The TIGER II stimulus program provided $22.7 million to help rebuild the port's freight rail connection, and construction has already started on a $610 million tunnel that will obviate what is now a parade of containers through downtown Miami, as trucks make their way to Interstate 95.
Both projects are on track to be completed in 2014, the year the Panama Canal expansion opens. State and local governments have already come up with financing for the tunnel, their half of the dredging, and ancillary tasks like strengthening retaining walls and installing newer, wider, taller cranes. The federal share of the dredging funds-a relatively small sum of $77 million-is the last and the most important piece of the puzzle. The necessary studies have been done, and there's not much time to wait."