The Port of Corpus Christi Commission has approved a long-term lease agreement with Lone Star Ports, a joint venture between the Carlyle Group and the Berry Group, for approximately 200 acres on Harbor Island to develop a petroleum export terminal.
As informed, Lone Star Ports’ facility on Harbor Island is designed to be the deepest-draft safe harbor crude export facility in the nation when commissioned, connecting US crude producers with all major international markets.
Immediately upon completion, the facility’s two docks will have access to the improved 56’ ship channel depth, making it the United States’ first and only onshore terminal capable of fully loading Suezmax vessels and nearly full loading very large crude carriers (VLCCs).
The 50-year lease agreement is expected to provide significant accretive value in the port’s annual operating revenues, according to Port of Corpus Christi.
Earlier this year, the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) awarded the first dredging contract for the Corpus Christi Ship Channel Improvement Project to the largest US dredging company, Great Lakes Dredge and Dock Company (GLDD), to deepen the channel to a depth of 56’ from the channel entrance to Harbor Island, and a planned depth of 54’ throughout the rest of the harbor.
“This long-term commitment is testament to the significance of the Corpus Christi gateway for American energy exports, which are expected to triple in the next decade,” Sean Strawbridge, Chief Executive Officer for the Port of Corpus Christi, commented.
“A 50-year lease agreement with the Carlyle Group and the Berry Group joint-venture company, Lone Star Ports, is not only complementary to our existing marine terminal infrastructure but also positions the Port of Corpus Christi to be the preferred outlet for US-produced crude exports,” he added.
Civil works for this facility repurposing project have been underway for the past year ahead of finalizing a definitive lease agreement, including the demolition of existing dock structures from a previous decades old Exxon crude import terminal on Harbor Island. The execution of this new lease enables the parties to commence major equipment and materials procurements and other construction efforts.
“This project on Harbor Island is the next pivotal step in directing the growing crude oil production in the United States to global markets via our Port of Corpus Christi,” Charles W. Zahn, Jr., Port of Corpus Christi Commission Chairman, said.