UPDATED: Port Arthur snags $13.6M grant to refurbish 25.5 acres of abandoned rail yard

Published 11:30 am Tuesday, August 9, 2022

Port Arthur’s investment in a major rail renovation effort just received a $13.6 million boost.

U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX) announced Tuesday that the city was awarded the funding via a Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) grant.

According to Cornyn, the grant encourages investment in road, rail, transit and port projects, and the funding comes through the Department of Transportation.

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“Access to safe and efficient infrastructure is critical for Texas,” Cornyn said. “I applaud this announcement and look forward to seeing the positive impact this investment will have in Port Arthur.”

The money is tied to a project to convert approximately 25.5 acres of an abandoned rail yard in Port Arthur into a multimodal area, including site stabilization, lighting, fencing, fiber optic, storm water management, relocation of utilities underground. and reconditioning of a two-story structure to mitigate flood risks.

This $13.6 million grant will add flexibility to multimodal freight transportation capabilities, reduce congestion and increase transportation safety and air quality, official said. The project will increase the Port’s efficiency, reducing truck and vessel dwell while improving the Port’s multimodal cargo handling capabilities and promoting local jobs.

“This is welcome news for Port Arthur. Our ports here in southeast Texas—and the petrochemical and maritime industries they support—are critical to the economic success of the United States, not just our region,” U.S. Rep. Randy Weber said. “This project will create new jobs and economic opportunities for Port Arthur.”

John Comeaux, president of Board of Commissioners for the Port of Port Arthur, said the grant and recognition for the Port is deeply appreciated.

“The investment goes a long way to support transportation efficiencies while creating local jobs and revitalizing Port Arthur,” he said.

Larry Kelley, Port of Port Arthur CEO/director, noted the grant is awarded on a competitive process.

“It focuses on improving supply chain resiliency while improving conditions in our port community,” he said.

Read more about the RAISE grant program here.