Port deal means more jobs, more opportunity

Published 4:14 pm Thursday, July 5, 2018

By Lorenzo Salinas



The Port of Beaumont entered into a public-private partnership with Allegiant Industrial Island Park, LLC to develop a former Chicago Bridge & Iron property in Beaumont.

The deal was formalized Tuesday for the property at 850 Pine St. in the amount of $8.25 million. The property has a fabrication facility and paint shop and would add 75 acres to the port’s real estate.

According to a news release from the port, initial plans for the facility would include rehabilitation, rebuilding of the docks and upgrades to all utilities. Work has already started.

“They closed the deal on July 3 and started work immediately,” Sade Chick, port spokeswoman, said. “They were ready to go in.”

Cleanup would constitute the first phase of work on the facility before pricing and upgrades could be done.

The facility, once renovated and complete, will be one of the three largest sites of its kind in the nation, Director Chris Fisher sai.

“It’s going to be a state-of-the-art, full-service fabrication shop and paint shop,” Fisher said.

Chick said the port recognized the experience in fabrication that Allegiant Industrial boasts and thought it would be a viable option based on improvements the port was doing overall.

Allegiant Industrial is a fabrication, construction and maintenance company that operates out of Kountze.

“This will allow them to do bigger and more extensive fabrication jobs, not only for our area but pretty much for any industry along the Gulf Coast and Caribbean,” Fisher said.

“We’re very excited about this opportunity,” he said. “The port is excited to have a good public-private partner in Allegiant.”

Fisher described this purchase as an opportunity to bring jobs back to the area.

“After Harvey, we lost a number of jobs at the site,” Fisher said. “So the Port of Beaumont is excited to be working with a public-private partner to bring jobs back to the area.”

Job creation as a result of the partnership and facility is projected to hover around 200 full-time positions with possibly hundreds more as the facility develops.

“We’re saying 200 initially. We’re comfortable in the future there will be more than that,” Fisher said. “There will be manufacturing and fabrication jobs for instance, not just construction jobs.”

Fisher estimated there would be somewhere around $40 million invested into the site as the project continues.

According to the news release, initial property improvements would hover around $8.25 million with an expected $20 million in revenue bonds for further development.

“We’re very excited to serve our local industry, but this is also a path to bring back a lot of jobs to our area,” Fisher said.