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Louisiana OKs deepening Mississippi River to 50 feet

Officials say the move will also provide deep draft access to the ports at Plaquemines, New Orleans, South Louisiana and Baton Rouge.
Credit: AP
The oil tanker Bow Performer navigates a turn in the Mississippi River in New Orleans, Wednesday, May 13, 2020. Attempts to curb the spread of COVID-19 have visited a kind of triple economic whammy on the state. As oil prices have plummeted, the industry laid off workers. Tourism has dried up, meaning more lost jobs. And one major tourist draw — cuisine built around fin fish, shrimp, oyster and crabs — is also suffering. (AP Photo/Gerald Herbert)

NEW ORLEANS — The Mississippi River in Louisiana is getting deeper. 

The state and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on Friday agreed to start deepening the shipping channel from the Gulf of Mexico to Baton Rouge from a depth of 45 feet to 50 feet. 

Officials say the move will also provide deep draft access to the ports at Plaquemines, New Orleans, South Louisiana and Baton Rouge.

Edwards says funding for the approximately $250 million project has been allocated through a variety of sources. 

He said as the non-federal sponsor, the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development has committed $81 million.

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