Mayor learns about N.O. port

Published 6:56 pm Saturday, August 18, 2018

Mayor George Flaggs Jr. toured the Port of New Orleans and met with port officials to gather information as part of a preliminary study to build a new port for Vicksburg on the Mississippi River.

“I met with Brandy Christian, the (New Orleans) port director, their marketing people and port employees and engineers,” said. “I got to tour the port and got a feel for port operations.”

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Flaggs met with the New Orleans port officials Tuesday as part of the visit to New Orleans to learn how officials there manage and operate the port. “New Orleans is the model (for port operations),” he said.

“I also used the time to open doors for a relationship between Vicksburg and the Port of New Orleans. This is a great opportunity for us to have a port on the Mississippi,” he said.

New Vicksburg port

Flaggs in April proposed building a multimodal port on the Mississippi River for Vicksburg estimated to cost $125 million and create 500 new jobs. The city’s share of the project is estimated at $28.5 million.

Flaggs will meet with Vicksburg-Warren Chamber of Commerce executive director Pablo Diaz to discuss the New Orleans visit and plans for a feasibility study to find a site for the new port and determine whether the facility is feasible. He estimated the study to cost about $2 million.

Diaz, who is also the county port director, is taking the lead on planning the port project Flaggs said.

“This is a great opportunity for the city,” Flaggs said.

Flaggs announced the proposed new port April 5 when he presented his proposed 10-year, $55 million capital improvements project that would be funded by a 1-cent special sales tax. He called the port project “a game changer.”

About John Surratt

John Surratt is a graduate of Louisiana State University with a degree in general studies. He has worked as an editor, reporter and photographer for newspapers in Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. He has been a member of The Vicksburg Post staff since 2011 and covers city government. He and his wife attend St. Paul Catholic Church and he is a member of the Port City Kiwanis Club.

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