Federal and local government officials, including Chip Jaenichen, the acting administrator of the U.S. Maritime Administration (MarAd), Guam Gov. Eddie Calvo, Sen. Tom Ada and port representatives participated in a groundbreaking ceremony Thursday to mark the final
stage of a $50-million expansion of the Port of Guam.
MarAd, which is administering the project on behalf of the Department of Defense, said the project will create a new area for shipping containers and improve existing container and bulk cargo facilities, essentially doubling the capacity of the port. It will improve the entry/exit gate area which will increase the efficiency and speed of cargo moving through the port.
The first stage of the project, completed in January, added upgrades to an existing building, including a secure cargo storage area, new large rollup doors and the construction of additional space. The port project is on budget and on schedule to be completed in 2015.
“Modernizing the port to meet the island’s future needs is vital to the people of Guam. Virtually all goods coming to and leaving Guam move through the port,” Jaenichen said.
Guam is a U.S territory in the central Pacific with important United States military bases. It has a population of about 182,000 persons. The port is designated by DOD as one of 17 key “strategic” commercial ports across the country. MarAd said the project will meet the demands of an expanding military presence on Guam, as well as the island’s commercial growth for decades to come.