Newport Port Commissioners this week approved the hiring of a firm that will help the port refine its plan for growing facilities that stretch from the Yaquina Bay Bridge to the recently partially constructed International Terminal on the north side of Yaquina Bay, east of the Embarcadero.
Port officials say they will hold several public meetings so local residents and all marine-related businesses can weigh in on what they’d like the port to offer in terms of services and berthing. Port Commissioners say they would like to have the plan ready for review early next year.
In the meantime private property owned by the legacy Hall fishing family, just to the east of the International Terminal, is about to see some serious construction activity. The Halls have long expressed their intention to build facilities on their land, adjacent to the International Terminal, to accommodate the support needs of the local fishing fleet including fishing net and gear storage in several buildings, along with other marine services.
The Port Commission also approved a contract with a dredging company to dig out and around mostly the eastern end of the NOAA docks at South Beach. The docks are usually dredged once every five years – but now is required every other year. The somewhat fickle Yaquina River has been depositing far more sediment on the river bottom in and around the NOAA docks than was forecasted when they were being planned and constructed nearly ten years ago.