'Ports Project' Creator And JAXPORT Discuss Dredging

Nov 25, 2013

Rain falls over the Jacksonville Port Authority, Oct. 7, 2013.
Credit Meredith Fordham Hughes / JAXPORT/Flickr

The Jacksonville Port Authority is moving ahead with plans to dredge the St. Johns River down to a depth of 47 feet, a project estimated to cost hundreds of millions of dollars.

Port officials, the Jax Chamber, Mayor Alvin Brown and other business leaders say it’s worth the money because a deeper shipping channel will attract bigger container ships and bring more jobs to the city. 

Critics of the dredging are pushing back, saying job estimates around the dredging project are inflated, and that there are concerns about the project’s impact on the river.

JAXPORT spokeswoman Nancy Rubin and David Jaffee, University of North Florida professor and author of The Ports Project, a research project looking at the various aspects of our port economy and the expansion of the JAXPORT enterprise, joined Melissa Ross to examine the issues surrounding the dredging debate.

You can follow Melissa Ross on Twitter @MelissainJax.