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The Port of Virginia has begun work on its ship-channel deepening project, as staging of heavy equipment needed for the project got underway last week.The work commenced following the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's approval last week of an offshore site for placement of dredge material. The approval triggered the project's notice to proceed, Virginia Port Authority Chief Executive Officer and Executive Director John Reinhart announced during the Hampton Roads Navigational Summit."This project holds long-term benefits for Virginia, for the port, for cargo owners, our customers and the ocean carriers," said Reinhart in a press release. "Safe, two-way movement of ultra-large container vessels, unrestricted by tide, is a significantcompetitive advantage for our port."Early last month, Reinhart signed a $78 million contract with Weeks Marine to begin the deepening of the western side of Thimble Shoal Channel. The entire project is budgeted for $350 million.Upon completion, the project will make the Port of Virginia the deepest port on the East Coast, authority officials have said.
CSX, Norfolk Southern Railway, Norfolk and Portsmouth Belt Line Railroad Co. and Commonwealth Railway serve the Port of Virginia.