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The total commerce of the Great Lakes in 1943, the latest year statistics are available as reported by the Engineer Department, was 204,000,000 tons. The traffic of all ports on the Atlantic, Pacific, and Gulf had a net total of 343,000,000 tons. The ton-mileage on the Lakes is given as 115,000,000,000 against a ton-mileage of all other rivers, canals, and connecting channels of 26,000,000,000.
The cost up to June 30, 1944, of new work of various kinds and at the several localities in charge of the Engineer Department, as given in the Report of the Chief of Engineers, is, in round numbers, as follows:
Cost of new work up to June 30, 1944
An investigation made several years since, to estimate the probable savings resulting from Great Lakes traffic as compared with probable all-rail cost, resulted in the conclusion that the savings amounted to $2 per ton on iron ore, $1.27 on coal, and $2.87 on grain. Applying these figures to the average annual amount of these three commodities carried in the 5-year period 1941–45 gives the following results: Iron ore, 92.5 million tons at $2.
$185, 000, 000 Coal, 54.7 million tons at $1.27.
69,000,000 Grain, 13.3 million tons at $2.87
38,000,000 Total, 160.5 million tons_
292,000,000 It appears from the above computation that the entire first cost of new work on the Great Lakes is returned annually in savings to the public.
In perfecting this transportation system the railroads, vessel interests and dock and elevator owners, have cooperated with the United States by expending far greater sums in the building of rail lines to and from the Lakes, suitable terminals of high efficiency and ships to carry the commerce. Such a system is believed to be worthy of being kept at the high standard of efficiency maintained by the private interests in the facilities devised and operated by them to make possible this general service. The improvements recommended in this report will contribute to this purpose and are believed to be worthy of the approval of this committee.
Îhe CHAIRMAN. As to the iron ore coming through the St. Marys River, about what proportion of it goes down to Lake Michigan ports, can you tell us ?
Mr. Sabin. These figures that I gave you include that.
Mr. SABIN. Yes, sir. It is considerably smaller, of course. We have the figures. I do not recall at the moment how much it is, but between 5 and 10 percent, perhaps, I should think.
The CHAIRMAN. Does that not increase more rapidly than the other? Mr. SABIN. Increase ?
The CHAIRMAN. The development at South Chicago, Gary, et cetera ?
Mr. Sabin. I thought you were speaking of the ore that comes from Escanaba, that is, the Lake Michigan ore. That is shipped on Lake Michigan. Yes; Gary has improved very rapidly. Our annual report shows, for each year, the amount that they use that goes down to the south end of Lake Michigan, but that is more than 10 percent of the total.
The CHAIRMAN. But does any of the coal go up over that?
The CHAIRMAN. How much current do the upstream boats have to contend with in the St. Clair River ?
Mr. SABIN. In the St. Clair?
Mr. SABIN. They have a very stiff current at the upper end of the river, called the Port Huron Rapids. There is about a 2-foot drop there in perhaps 2 miles, something like that, and the current runs perhaps 3 miles an hour. That is about as heavy a current as we have to compete with anywhere, I think.
The CHAIRMAN. Did you ever contemplate locks in that?
Mr. SABIN. Yes; it has been spoken of, but as long as we can navi. gate that current, we would not want locks put in. It means a delay of at least an hour to every ship.
The CHAIRMAN. Those boats go up through that current pretty well, do they?
Mr. SABIN. Oh, yes; they go up there, I should say perhaps at half speed, 7 or 8 miles an hour, where ordinarily they would go faster.
The CHAIRMAN. What speed do they make on still water?
Mr. SABIN. Ten to fourteen miles an hour. Some of these new boats go a little faster than 14 miles when light.
The CHAIRMAN. Thank you very much.
HOLLYWOOD HARBOR (PORT EVERGLADES), FLA.
(H. Doc. 768, 78th Cong.)
Colonel FERINGA. I believe Mr. Rodgers is here from Florida, and he probably wants to talk about Hollywood Harbor.
Mr. RODGERS. I would appreciate to take it up now. I have a notice that you would take it up right now. I would like to have permission to insert a written statement a little later on in the record.
The CHAIRMAN. All right, sir. You will have that privilege.
Colonel FERINGA. Mr. Chairman, the report on Hollywood Harbor, Fla. (also known as Port Everglades) was submitted in response to a resolution of this committee adopted January 13, 1944. It is a review report and is printed in House Document No. 768, Seventy-eighth Congress, second session.
Hollywood Harbor is on the east coast of Florida, 23 miles north of Miami Harbor and 48 miles south of the port of Palm Beach. It occupies a part of Lake Mabel, a small shallow body of water separated from the ocean by a narrow sand strip and serves the adjoining cities of Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood.
The existing Federal project provides for a jetty-protected flaring entrance channel about 7,300 feet long and 35 feet deep, 500 feet wide at its ocean end and 300 feet wide at the inner end, with some widening at the basin entrance, and for a turning basin 35 feet deep, 1,200 feet long in the east-west direction and 1,550 feet wide in the northsouth direction.
The project was completed in 1940. Federal costs through May 31, 1944, were $1,436,854 for new work and $239,849 for maintenance.
Local interests initiated the harbor development in 1927 by dredging a channel 35 feet deep and 210 feet wide extending west from the ocean to a turning basin in the lake, constructing short rock jetties at the ocean entrance and providing slip 1 for ship docking, 35 feet deep, 1,200 feet long, and 300 feet wide west of the turning basin in approximate alinement with the entrance channel. In 1930, Congress authorized maintenance of the harbor by the United States.
Local interests have also provided piers, slips, warehouses and other terminal facilities.
They report that their investment for port improvement has exceeded $11,000,000.
The project has been a going project for many years, it has adequate depth in the channel, and also in the turning basin. However, the turning basin is constricted, and we are recommending that the turning basin be widened in order to take care of the tremendous amount of traffic that has been developing and is now developing.
The CHAIRMAN. Is that the channel constructed a good many years ago at their own expense?
Colonel FERINGA. Yes, sir. It was constructed at their own expense, and I think about 1933 or 1934 legislation was passed authorizing the engineers to maintain the channel. It was initially constructed at their own expense, and since then has been enlarged by the Federal Government.
The CHAIRMAN. My recollection was that it was a deep but narrow channel.
Colonel FERINGA. It was a deep but narrow channel, and the jetties were made out of light rock, so there had to be considerable amount of repair work done on the jetties.
Prewar commerce of the port increased from about 28,000 tons in 1932 to 1,325,000 tons in 1941, and during that 10-year period averaged about 540,000 tons annually. In the war years of 1942 and 1943, the port handled 1,458,700 tons and 2,391,200 tons, respectively, including in the latter year about 600,000 tons of traffic by seatrain to Cuba.
The principal commodities handled were petroleum products, molasses, and sugar.
Ocean vessels with drafts up to 311, feet made 777 round trips to the harbor in 1943. Oil and molasses tankers 400 to 500 feet long use the port. The new tankers being built have a length of about 525 feet and it is expected that that will be the predominant tanker length after the war.
Fort Lauderdale and Hollywood had a combined 1940 permanent population of about 24,000 and are the leading business and commercial centers of the surrounding area. The region is devoted principally to the growing of vegetables, citrus fruits, and sugar cane, dairying, raising of beef cattle, limestone quarrying, catering to winter visitors and tourists, and the manufacture of raw sugar, molasses, and other products, most of which are consumed locally. Crude oil is produced in the area tributary to the port from one recently drilled well and further explorations of the petroleum deposits of the region are in progress.
As I recall, and as Mr. Rogers will know about this, it seems that the State of Florida offered a price to whoever would bring in a producing_well; is that not right? Mr. ROGERS. That is right.
Colonel FERINGA. Although they do have a producing well, the prize, I'm told, has yet to be awarded.
Mr. ROGERS. I think it was tentatively awarded, but I do not know whether it was delivered or not. It was to go to the University of Florida.
Colonel FERINGA. Local interests desire widening of the turning basin by 200 feet on the north and 500 feet on the south and enlargement of the flared section where the channel enters the basin, all areas to have a depth of 35 feet.
They contend that for several years the harbor facilities have been inadequate for efficient handling of commerce using the port and report that all the business recently available to the port could not be accepted because of facility limitations.
The port authority intends to lengthen slip 2 to 1,200 feet and deepen it to 35 feet, provide ship berths 35 feet deep at the end of pier 4 which borders slip 2 on the north, deepen slip. 3 to 35 feet, provide berths 35 feet deep at the east end of pier 3 bordering slip 3 on the south and to provide all necessary auxiliary terminal improvements, including railroad trackage and cargo handling and storage facilities.
Enlargement of the harbor basin is required to afford access to additional terminal facilities which local interests offer to provide and which are considered necessary to serve a growing peacetime commerce. The existing basin is inadequate suitably to accommodate the vessels which now use the harbor.
Accordingly, the Board recommends modification of the existing project to provide for general widening of the turning basin by 200 feet on the north and 500 feet on the south and for enlarging the flare of the entrance channel at the basin, all to a depth of 35 feet. The Chief of Engineers concurs in the recommendation of the Board.
The report recommends that local interests be required to furnish the rights-of-way and suitably diked spoil-disposal areas for the new work and subsequent maintenance, promptly improve slip 3, provide a berthing area at the end of pier 3, and agree to hold the United States free from claims for damages resulting from the improvement.
The costs of improvements are as follows:
Based on the increase in tonnage for the prewar period it is estimated that during a similar postwar period the commerce of the port will increase approximately 43 percent.
The preparation of an estimate of a definite amount of money savings in freight transportation costs to be expected as a result of the improvement, to be balanced against the annual charges, in this case is impracticable. The value of the improvement requested must be judged by its necessity for the convenience and safety of established navigation and commerce, rather than on freight savings to be expected.
Local interests estimate that the net annual return from the additional public terminals will total $86,527, which is in excess of the local annual carrying charges of $77,770.
The existing port facilities at Port Everglades have for several years been inadequate to handle properly the commerce of the port. The Department is of the opinion that the proposed work will remedy the inadequacies of the harbor and that the recommended expenditures are justified.
In other words, we have not endeavored to place a ratio of benefits to cost in this project. It is a going port. It is unduly constricted by the comparatively small turning basin, and we recommend it as a necessary improvement of a well established and prosperous port. The governor of the State is in favor of the proposition and so is the Bureau of the Budget.
Mr. RODGERS. Thank you, Mr. Chairman.
NORFOLK HARBOR, VA.
STATEMENT OF HON. RALPH H. DAUGHTON, A REPRESENTATIVE
IN CONGRESS FROM THE STATE OF VIRGINIA
Mr. DAUGHTON. I am here really representing Hampton Roads Maritime Association which, in turn, represents all of us folks down there interested in Hampton Roads. This Craney Island project which will be used, as you gentlemen probably know, for the dumping of mud sucked out of the channels as they are deepened will save us untold thousands of dollars and will greatly facilitate work thereby in dredging operations. A lot of that mud and stuff today is being hauled really to sea because there is no place in there to dump it.
I think, too, you gentlemen might take into consideration the fact that we probably have the largest coal-shipping port in the world. I believe that probably twice as much coal goes out of Hampton Roads area, maybe three times as much, as from all of the other ports of the country together. Not only does practically all of the export coal go out of Hampton Roads, but millions and millions of tons are shipped out of there going to the New England States.
All of our coal piers are in this area as well as our merchandise piers.
I discussed this Craney Island project some time back, maybe 2 years ago, with Colonel Cruse, our district engineer; he has had this in the back of his head for a long, long time, and he says it will be one of the finest things that ever happened there. I believe he said it was estimated that it would do us for a long, long time, when all of us will be gone away from here.