Murray, Larsen tour Port of Everett, hear upgrade plans

EVERETT — Rep. Rick Larsen and Sen. Patty Murray on Wednesday pledged continued support for the Port of Everett’s construction plans to handle bigger cargo ships.

The two Democratic members of Congress backed the port’s successful pursuit of a $10 million federal construction grant. Port officials showed Larsen and Murray what they plan to do with the money, which will help pay for work to upgrade the port’s South Terminal.

The improvements are necessary in order to handle bigger cargo ships, Port of Everett Chief Executive Les Reardanz said during the walking tour.

Ocean freighters are getting bigger. The largest container ships today are about one-third bigger than they were just 10 years ago, said Capt. Grant Stewart, vice president of marine operations and vessel safety for Westwood Shipping Lines.

Longshoremen moved containers off a 650-foot Westwood ship as the elected officials and their entourage walked by. The vessel was nearly as long as the wharf it was tied to.

“This ship is about the maximum that Everett can handle,” Stewart said.

Lengthening the port’s wharves is not enough, though.

“So much depends on getting the containers out of the port” quickly and reliably, he said.

The port’s upgrade plans include extended its rail connections, allowing for faster loading and unloading of rail cars. The agency also is working with the city of Everett to widen intersections, making it easier to move containers to the highway. Everett Mayor Ray Stephanson and Snohomish County Executive Dave Somers joined the group for the stroll.

“There’s a lot of future work to be done” on Everett’s waterfront, Murray said. She said she will continue to work with port officials to find ways the federal government can help.

Congress members can help in part by “being a cheerleader” for the port in Washington, D.C., Larsen said. It also means making sure federal agencies know when the port’s needs match a grant program’s goals.

Dan Catchpole: 425-339-3454;; Twitter: @dcatchpole.

Talk to us

More in Local News

COVID-19 updates for parents and guardians

Public Health Essentials! A blog by the Snohomish Health District.

Shouts and joy: After 75 years war’s end still unforgettable

Machias native, author of “Pilchuck Reflections,” was watching a movie in Everett when the news came.

Everett man identified after being stabbed to death in fight

A man reportedly stabbed Sophan Phal, 35, Sunday night near Everett and fled the scene.

Soper Hill roundabout and pedestrian trail work wraps up

Lake Stevens and Marysville worked together on the traffic infrastructure because of nearby development.

Oak Harbor Public Schools decide on plan for fall opening

Conditions which must be met for a combination of in-person education and distance learning.

Police dog nabs, nips man suspected of burgling smoke shops

Monroe police arrested a man after two smoke shops were broken into Monday morning.

Rep. Larsen tours small businesses given federal PPP loans

The congressman said leaders in Washington D.C. continue to negotiate for further COVID-19 relief.

Inslee directs $40 million to aid the undocumented

Approved applicants will receive $1,000. But payments may not be available until October.

Slowdown ahead for port as COVID pummels aerospace industry

The Port of Everett is bracing to suffer as its biggest customer, the Boeing Co., scales back production.

Most Read