Port of Corpus Christi approves $217M bond package

Posted at 6:22 PM, Jun 22, 2018
and last updated 2018-06-22 19:22:29-04

The Port of Corpus Christi has authorized up to $217 million in revenue bonds to finance major improvements including the Corpus Christi Ship Channel.

In a press release, officials said the port had authorized a bond resolution for up to $217 million in bonds for major capital improvements.

Among the projects are continued development of terminals, rail and channel improvements needed to accommodate the expanding oil and gas industry in the area.

Key to the Port’s expansion plan is the deepening and widening of the Corpus Christi Ship Channel. As we’ve reported, the project would increase the now 45-foot deep channel to a depth of 54-feet to accommodate Suezmax and larger vessels such as supertankers.

Meanwhile, widening of the channel will allow two-way traffic into and out of the port, making the Port of Corpus Christi the deepest draft navigation port on the gulf coast.

The various improvements all have a common goal: expand the port’s ability to support the booming energy industry in the Coastal Bend. Officials hope the expansion will allow the port to handle ever-increasing volumes of US crude and natural gas products moving through local industries.

"We are pleased the commission approved this bond resolution and look forward to a successful round of financing," Sean Strawbridge, CEO of Port of Corpus Christi said. “With the growth our customers are experiencing, coupled with our P3 (Public Private Partnership) development structures, this additional financing will augment our already strong balance sheet and position the South Texas Coastal Bend for further prosperity.”

The announcement comes on the heels of another major announcement made earlier in the month when the US Army Corpus of Engineers included nearly $23 million in its Work Plan for the Corpus Christi Channel Improvement Project.

The channel project, expected to cost around $335 million, has now received over $138 million in Federal and Port contributed funds, according to officials. Dredging operations are expected to commence later this year.