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Buttigieg goes to Ohio River port to discuss grant for pier

April 13, 2022 GMT

TELL CITY, Ind. (AP) — A $1.6 million federal grant will pay for the construction of a new southern Indiana pier on the Ohio River to be used for unloading of pig iron for a foundry, officials said Wednesday.

U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg went to Tell City to discuss the grant and tour the Ohio River port with Indiana Department of Transportation Director Michael Smith and local officials. Tell City is about midway between Evansville and Louisville, Kentucky.

The project will pay for building a 40-foot- (12.2-meter-) diameter pier for a crane that will be used for direct barge-to-truck unloading of pig iron when the river is high.

The pig iron is a necessary raw material for Waupaca Foundry and other manufacturers near Tell City, the Evansville Courier & Press reported. The new pier will help increase port productivity by up to 60% and help maintain 1,000 jobs in a town of about 7,000 people, the U.S. Department of Transportation said. The foundry produces iron castings.

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“We know that communities rise or fall based on the quality of their infrastructure,” Buttigieg said. “Infrastructure is, at the end of the day, the foundation on which we build our future. This port in this community has needed this investment for too long a time. Those benefits are going to ripple out into the community.”