Helena Harbor Awarded $535,000 Grant By Arkansas Waterways Commission
Officials at Helena Harbor, formally known as the Helena-West Helena/Phillips County Port Authority, announced that the port has been awarded a grant of $535,000 from the Arkansas Waterways Commission at a public meeting held in Little Rock May 19.
The DRA funding will pave and improve a stretch of road that is needed to keep with the growing demands of Helm Fertilizer. Work is expected to start on this project within the next 90 days.
John C. Edwards, general counsel and economic development director for Helena Harbor, said the grant award was critical in improving road improvements to not only support the current Helm Fertilizer Terminal expansion at the harbor, but for future tenants seeking to locate along the southeastern side of the slackwater harbor.
The $535,000 in Arkansas Waterways Commission funding follows up an award of $745,118 from the Delta Regional Authority for road improvements earlier this year.
The Arkansas Waterways Commission funding will provide for a staging lane for 18- wheeler traffic and additional road improvements to help make a safer and more efficient operation.
Helena Harbor Board Chairman Leroy Carter said, “The support of the Arkansas Waterways Commission has been vital to our success.”
Scott Shirk, president of Helm Fertilizer, said the award was great news and will enhance Helm’s operation. According to Shirk, Helm will be investing more than $12 million in the next two years to expand terminal infrastructure to support agriculture and accommodate increased fertilizer demand across the mid-South.
Edwards said, “On behalf of the board of directors of Helena Harbor, we are truly honored with the trust and confidence that has been placed in us by the Arkansas Waterways commissioners and Director Cassandra Caldwell.”