Landing more land
Since 2004, the Port of Greater Baton Rouge has been putting together a large tract of land along the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. In September 2012, $6.5 million later, the 405-acre puzzle nearly was complete.
The last parcel, about 135 acres, had a “huge number” of heirs, executive director Jay Hardman says.
“I've never been a big fan of expropriation under any set of circumstances,” he says. “It just takes time working through. We'd let it sit for a while, then [the owners] would come to us.”
There are no specific plans for the new land yet. Hardman suggests a tank farm expansion might be a good fit for some of the land, and says one company is considering using it to transfer dry bulk to the deepwater docks. There's not much open space under the port's jurisdiction left; now the port has room to grow.
“I think years from now—maybe sooner than later—people will say, 'I'm glad the commission did this,'” Hardman says.
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