(AVONDALE, La) — Last week, the Department of Transportation approved nearly $10 million in funding to support improvements to the iconic former Avondale Shipyard property. Avondale Marine was awarded $9,880,000 to convert an aging wharf at the historic site into a modern cargo dock.
The infusion of funds will help to create over 2,000 jobs, improve traffic flow and allow Avondale Marine to handle cargo more effectively. Since the former shipyard was purchased by Avondale Marine, there have been plans in place to redevelop the site’s crane, dock and terminal assets while connecting global waterborne commerce with manufacturing, fabrication and distribution facilities onshore. Over the summer, JEDCO submitted a letter of support for the Avondale Dock Conversion Project.
“This represents a significant step for the continued repositioning of the former Avondale Shipyard site,” said JEDCO President and CEO Jerry Bologna. “This infusion of funding will continue to create jobs and investment at the Avondale site and will create new opportunities for growth. JEDCO is proud to support this project and we look forward to remaining a steadfast partner to the long-term development of Avondale Marine.”
“We are humbled and elated that Jefferson Parish has been awarded this grant and thankful for the support of all stakeholders,” said Adam Anderson, CEO of T. Parker Host. “This grant would not have been possible without the unwavering support of our parish leaders. We would like to acknowledge Jefferson Parish President Lee Sheng and JEDCO for making Avondale’s return to commerce a top regional priority. We also would like to thank Congressmen Scalise and Richmond, in partnership with Senators Kennedy and Cassidy, whose efforts have maintained economic development, including the creation of maritime jobs, at the forefront of policy making.
“Coincidentally, this month we celebrate our two-year anniversary of the acquisition of Avondale. This grant is an exciting milestone, but also a testament to the level of cooperation that has been required for our progress. We cannot thank Governor Edwards and the entirety of the Louisiana congressional and state legislative delegation enough, for their continued commitment to Avondale and Jefferson Parish, and ask that all stakeholders remain engaged and motivated as we overcome future challenges together to put Avondale back to work.”
Other organizations joining in this effort included Greater New Orleans, Inc., Jefferson Chamber of Commerce, Jefferson Business Council, Westbank Business & Industry Association, World Trade Center New Orleans and a host of elected officials on the local, state and federal level.
Avondale Marine, a joint venture between T. Parker Host and Hilco Redevelopment Partners, purchased the 254-acre site in 2018 from Huntington Ingalls, Inc. The company is redeveloping the former shipyard into a modern, world-class global logistics hub, with value-added manufacturing at its core, to maximize job growth and investment in Jefferson Parish.