Baltimore port channel set to fully reopen by end of May

By Staff
2 Min Read

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers expects to open a limited access channel to the Port of Baltimore by the end of April, with the permanent channel reopened by the end of May, according to a Thursday press release.

The government agency aims to open the limited access channel — measuring 280 feet wide and 35 feet deep — by the end of April, which will support one-way traffic for barge container service and roll-on/roll-off vessels. This will aid in the transport of automobiles and farm equipment in and out of the port.

Army Corps engineers aim to reopen the permanent 700-foot-wide by 50-feet-deep Fort McHenry Channel by the end of May. The channel, which the Francis Scott Key Bridge collapsed into, will help restore port access to normal capacity.

Baltimore is a meaningful hub for farm equipment and certain commodity shipments. Around 25% of U.S. raw beet and sugar cane imports come through the port. Nearly $650 million worth of ag products were shipped out of Baltimore in 2023, according to data analyzed the American Farm Bureau Federation.

Vessel traffic continues to be suspended at the Port of Baltimore, though truck access is still being processed inside the marine terminals, the port said Thursday.

The timeline is subject to change due to adverse weather conditions and changes in the “complexity of the wreckage,” Lt. Gen. Scott A. Spellmon, USACE commanding general, said in the press release.

“Thanks to the exhaustive work of the unified command during the last two weeks, including underwater surveys and detailed structural analysis of the wreckage, we’ve developed a better understanding of the immense and complex work that lies ahead,” Spellmon said in a statement.

Sarah Zimmerman contributed to this story.

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