Arkansas's Little Rock Port Authority announced July 6 that it had secured $11 million in investments to support transportation infrastructure improvements in the port's footprint. As many as 1,500 new jobs may be added, according to a release from the port.
Located on the Arkansas River, the Little Rock Port is the largest industrial hub in central Arkansas with over 40 businesses employing more than 4,000 people. It features rail, river and interstate highway access.
The key element of the enterprise is a $5 million project for new construction to widen and improve Zeuber Road, made possible through funding from the U.S. Economic Development Administration (USEDA), the Arkansas Economic Development Commission (AEDC), the City of Little Rock and Pulaski County.
The road handles heavy industrial materials and will be upgraded in anticipation of two new companies – CZ USA and HMS Manufacturing – set to locate at the port.
In addition to the Zeuber Road improvements, the Port of Little Rock also announced an additional $6 million in public infrastructure funds for additional road widening, intersection improvements and new road construction to accommodate increased transportation capacity needs associated with the new companies. Funding for these improvements was provided through the Delta Regional Authority (DRA), as well as the USEDA, the AEDC, the City of Little Rock, and Pulaski County.
"Now more than ever, it's critical that our infrastructure keep pace with the growing demands of industry in Arkansas," said Gov. Asa Hutchinson. "The Port of Little Rock is a prime area for business. Once completed, the Zeuber Road project will be an important asset for businesses that require easily navigable infrastructure to support workforce and trade."
"The Delta Regional Authority's investment at the Port of Little Rock is the exact project our dollars are meant for – supporting transportation infrastructure and industry-driven job creation," said DRA Federal Co-Chairman Chris Caldwell. "The DRA's investment improves roadways for a major transportation and logistical hub in Arkansas, and it is a vital component in supporting Arkansas's workforce and attracting new industry and jobs to the Delta region."