U.S. Senators Jack Reed and Sheldon Whitehouse and U.S. Representative Seth Magaziner today announced $3.8 million in federal funding through the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Port Infrastructure Development Program (PIDP) to construct a ramp at the Port of Davisville’s Pier 1 to accommodate stern offload roll-on/roll-off (ro-ro) vessels that carry automobiles and other wheeled cargo.
Quonset Development Corporation, which manages the Port of Davisville, is currently in the process of reconstructing the perimeter of Pier 1. The new award will support continued improvements to Pier 1, including the construction of a stern ramp that will accommodate a growing and diverse fleet of ro-ro vessels that are more commonly being used for cargo transfer due to a shortage of other kinds of transport vessels.
The Port of Davisville, Rhode Island’s only public port, is a key part of the Quonset Business Park, which is home to more than 200 companies and over 13,000 jobs. Last year, the delegation secured $11.25 million through PIDP to support upgrades to the port’s North Berth at Pier 1. In 2020, an additional $11.14 million was secured under PIDP for the first phase of improvements to Pier 1.
“I’m pleased to once again deliver federal funding to help the Port of Davisville make long-term infrastructure investments that will lead to substantial efficiency gains and extend the operational capabilities of the port. We have worked hard to make Quonset a strategic gateway for the import and movement of automobiles and other cargo. The new stern off-load ramp will help drive more business to Rhode Island by allowing different types of vessels to process more cargo, safely and efficiently,” said Reed.
“Thanks in part to frequent federal infrastructure investments, the Port of Davisville has become a regional leader in car imports and an economic engine for the Ocean State,” said Whitehouse. “This new award will support ongoing investments in the Port’s infrastructure and overall capacity that help create well-paying jobs and keep our economy competitive.”
“It is critical to invest in Rhode Island’s ports to create good-paying, union jobs and spur economic activity in our state,” said Magaziner. “The Port of Davisville is an economic engine for Rhode Island, and this federal funding will be used to increase the port’s capacity to handle stern offload roll-on/roll-off vessels and other cargo while bringing commerce to our state.”
Davisville is in the top ten ports in North America for import of finished automobiles, and imports through the Port make up approximately 11 percent of all finished vehicles brought to the United States. This cargo supports approximately $375 million in business output in the State of Rhode Island, and is nationally important to the success of the automobile supply chain.
“Quonset’s Port of Davisville is a tangible example of Rhode Island’s economic momentum,” said Governor Dan McKee. “I thank our Congressional Delegation for securing these funds because investments in Quonset are investments in good-paying jobs that help keep our economy moving forward.”
“The Congressional delegation’s success in securing public investment for the Port of Davisville is just the latest example of how support from officials at every level of government has contributed to Quonset’s success,” said Steven J. King, P.E., managing director of the Quonset Development Corporation. “The leadership, planning, consistency and ‘Can Do’ approach that has been brought to bear at Quonset over the years has created a window into what is possible in Rhode Island.”
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