Starting in 2009, the SLSDC initiated its multi-year U.S. Seaway Asset Renewal Program (ARP) for its navigation infrastructure and facilities. The ARP projects and equipment included in the ARP Capital Investment Plan (CIP) address various needs for the two U.S. Seaway locks, the Seaway International Bridge connecting Ontario and New York, maintenance dredging, operational systems, and Corporation facilities and equipment. None of these investments will result in increases to the authorized depth or width of the navigation channel or to the size of the two existing U.S. locks. The ARP marks the first time in the Seaway’s history that a coordinated effort to repair and modernize the U.S. Seaway infrastructure has taken place.
For the FY 2015-2019 time frame, the Seaway ARP/CIP includes 44 separate ARP projects and equipment estimated at $90.9 million with total funding for each year of the plan constrained to funding targets for those years as approved by the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Dollar amounts for ARP projects are “project feasibility” estimates that can vary by an industry-recognized standard of 20-30 percent. Project estimates and schedules may fluctuate at various points in the lifespan of the ARP and are revised as needed and on a continuing basis throughout the length of the ARP.
In the first five years of ARP funding (FYs 2009-2013), the SLSDC obligated $79.8 million on 42 separate ARP projects. These projects included maintenance dredging in the U.S. portion of the Seaway navigation channel, lock culvert valve machinery upgrade to hydraulic operation, structural rehabilitation and corrosion prevention work on the Seaway International Bridge, gatelifter upgrades, and upstream miter gate rehabilitation, as well as various other structural and equipment repairs and/or replacement.
The ARP is resulting in not only modernized infrastructure and new equipment to ensure the long-term reliability of the St. Lawrence Seaway, but it is also having a positive and significant impact on the Upstate New York economy. In fact, more than 70 percent of the ARP funds obligated during the program’s first five years, totaling more than $58 million, were awarded within the region. In addition to these contracts, the ARP is producing approximately $1.5 - $2.5 million in additional economic benefits to the region (e.g., local permanent and temporary hires, local spending on supplies and equipment, lodging, meals, etc.) each year.
Available ARP reports to the U.S. Congress include: