United States Congressman Ted Poe joined Eighth Coast Guard District Commander Admiral Mary Landry and local elected officials for the official groundbreaking for the Port of Beaumont’s $10.5 million Rail Improvement Project.
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C.A. “Pete” Shelton, president of the Board of Commissioners for the Port of Beaumont, said that the project has been in the planning stages since the 1990s.
“We found out during this study that the riverfront was better for commercial property than it was for railroad holding yards,” Shelton said.
Port Director Chris Fisher, who said the project had a number of challenges throughout the past decade, thanked Shelton and the commissioners for moving it forward, as well as the local, state and federal officials who have supported it.
Admiral Landry noted the importance of the Port of Beaumont to the nation’s security.
“This is a strategic port,” Landry said. “It gets a lot of attention from the national level on down, and I am thrilled that you are going to have this opportunity to build these rail improvements.”
Congressman Poe, who recently visited the troops in Afghanistan, agreed with Landry on the importance of the Port of Beaumont.
“Most of the equipment our military uses comes from this port,” Poe said. “It is the number one military port in the world for our equipment.”