Washington, DC – The US Senate today approved an amendment to The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) authorizing the federal government to convey the eastward expansion of Craney Island to the Virginia Port Authority (VPA).
The amendment clears the way for the 600-acre eastward expansion of Craney Island to convey to the VPA when the agency determines the time is right for the construction of the fourth state-owned marine terminal. That state-of-the-art terminal will be built on the expansion. Presently the VPA, in partnership with the US Army Corps of Engineers, is engaged in a multi-year project to develop that 600-acre expansion.
The Craney amendment and two more that were specific to Virginia were championed by US Sens. Mark R. Warner (D-VA) and Timothy M. Kaine (D-VA).
"This bipartisan bill provides common-sense fixes to allow progress to continue on this important project," Warner said. "By conveying authority over certain parts of Craney Island to the Virginia Port Authority, our amendment removes some of the red tape that has hindered a project that is vital to Virginia's economic development."
"I'm pleased we've passed this important legislation that is good for the country and will boost essential Virginia priorities," Kaine said. "This bill will advance a project of critical importance for the Virginia Port Authority and fix one of the barriers to restoring a Northern Virginia trail."
The Craney Island amendment provides for authorization for the Secretary of the Army to convey certain areas of the Craney Island Dredged Material Management Area to the VPA. Currently, the dredge material area and the eastward expansion project are owned and operated by the Corps; the eastward expansion project was approved in the 2007 version of the WRDA.
"The VPA wants to recognize the effort of the senators for their leadership in facilitating the next step for the eastward expansion of Craney Island," said Rodney W. Oliver, the VPA's interim executive director. "Their work in securing this land transfer will provide future capacity to handle seaborne cargo at The Port of Virginia."
Above: An engineer's rendering of the fully-completed Craney Island Marine Terminal.