GULFPORT, MS (WLOX) - The Port of Gulfport's expansion project is taking a major step forward. Tuesday, the Army Corps of Engineers essentially signed off on the project in releasing its Record of Decision.
The ROD outlines all the issues discussed in the Final Environmental Impact Statement, including the environmental impacts associated with the project.
The review found any adverse impacts from the proposed project would be "temporary and minor" and are associated with Port construction. Those temporary impacts include air quality, noise, and water quality.
The main long-term adverse impact would be to the local air quality, but it would still be within the acceptable range for national air quality standards.
"As we near completion of our Restoration Project, the Port is limited on how we can acquire waterfront land, making this a good time to receive the approved EIS permit," said Port CEO and Executive Director Jonathan Daniels. "As our business portfolio continues to grow, it is necessary to evaluate future expansion options at the deepwater terminal that will allow for even greater throughput potential."
The project is expected to include a 282-acre dredge and fill program for further expansion of the west pier, north harbor, east pier, and the construction of a 4,000-linear foot breakwater system.
You can see the full Record of Decision here: http://bit.ly/2rRxLqL
"The Port of Gulfport is a major economic driver for Harrison County and the entire Mississippi Gulf Coast. The approval of the Environmental Impact Statement marks a significant step toward the port's goal of becoming the Port of the Future by opening more doors for continued growth, investment and job creation, all of which will benefit the economy for generations to come," Gov. Phil Bryant said.