As part of President Obama’s initiative to double our national exports by 2015, DOT has been committed to investing in our nation’s aging infrastructure and ports.
In keeping with that commitment, on Tuesday, Maritime Administrator David Matsuda helped break ground on the “Green Port Gateway,” a major port-to-rail infrastructure expansion project in Southern California.
Funded in part by a $17 million Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant, this project will help reduce congestion and improve the environment at the Port of Long Beach by shifting more cargo from trucks to trains.
When completed, the $83.5 million project will improve the connection between the Port of Long Beach and the Alameda Corridor, a rail line that carries about 15 percent of all waterborne containers entering or leaving the United States.
MARAD Administrator David Matsuda, Long Beach Mayor Bob Foster, Congressman Alan Lowenthal, California Transportation Commissioner Fran Inman, and Port Commission President Susan Wise.
And according to the Port of Long Beach, the project will create 340 full-time construction-related jobs, including those responsible for track realignment on Ocean Boulevard and construction of a rail support yard.
It’s no secret that efficient trade requires up-to-date infrastructure for stability and growth, and these rail improvements are key to our ability to export American products overseas.
The Port of Long Beach handles cargo valued at $155 billion for the state of California, and over 1.4 million jobs nationwide are related to Long Beach generated trade. Our investment in this rail connection will mean greater volumes of cargo, and even more jobs.
As Administrator Matsuda said, “trade is essential to our economy. This DOT investment will provide good jobs now, and boost America’s long-term economic viability by enhancing the amount of cargo that can come through our ports.”
This Administration knows that America’s ability to export to countries around the world depends on a modern and efficient goods movement infrastructure. This investment shows just how serious we are about achieving that goal.