It's on us. Share your news here.

Chicago’s IIPD Critically Needs $50 million of Federal & State Grants to Rehabilitate Port’s Crumbling Infrastructure

Posted on May 15, 2023

The Illinois International Port District (IIPD) is seeking a combination of state and federal grants, as well as private funding, to rehabilitate its critical infrastructure and help maintain the global supply chain.

IIPD recently applied for a $37 million grant from the Federal Maritime Administration’s Port Infrastructure Development Program (PIDP) to rehabilitate the 113-year-old dock wall at the Iroquois Landing Lakefront Terminal along Lake Michigan. Iroquois Landing is the IIPD’s Great Lakes dock and storage facility allowing shippers access to the Atlantic Ocean via the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Gulf of Mexico via the Illinois river system. Multiple failures of the current dock wall have resulted in closures, deterring the IIPD from reaching its full potential.

This investment will also help create a strategic, long-term operational plan, implement safety updates for the port and create more opportunities for employment on Chicago’s southeast side.

“Over the last seven decades, some of our original infrastructure has started to fail. We’re seeing collapsed roofs at warehouses and sinkholes opening up across our docks. We can’t continue to neglect the vital lifeline that connects Chicago to the rest of the world,” said Erik Varela, IIPD Executive Director.

The Illinois Department of Transportation, through Governor Pritzker’s Rebuild Illinois Program, would also support this work with an $18 million match along with private funds from the North American Stevedoring Company (NASCO), a primary tenant at the port, to complete the entire 3,000 ft. dock wall.

“If this application is successful, our communities will be able to see the vitality and potential that our port has to offer. Through the port’s partnerships with tenants, leaders across the State of Illinois, Cook County, and the Mayor’s office, we will be able to take a long-awaited step toward our goal of rehabilitating the port’s infrastructure,” Varela said.

IIPD is one of the busiest and largest multimodal facilities on the Great Lakes; it handles up to 19 million tons of cargo annually. It creates stable jobs that lead to reinvestment in Chicago’s southeast side while keeping a keen eye on the environment.

The Illinois International Port District is an Illinois municipal corporation created to promote the shipment of cargoes and commerce through its nearly 2,000 acres of industrial and recreational land on Chicago’s southeast side. The IIPD contributes more than $700 million to the economy per year through its ship and rail ports.

It's on us. Share your news here.
Submit Your News Today

Join Our
Click to Subscribe