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US Army Corps of Engineers
Southwestern Division

The Texas coastline with its 13 shallow draft ports and 15 deep draft ports, as well as the 423 miles long Texas portion of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, for a total of 760 miles of shallow draft and 240 miles of deep draft. 

 

Galveston District's Hurricane Protection Structure at Texas City, standing strong after Hurricane Ike in 2008.

 

The Houston Ship Channel

 

Texas Coast and Ports

The great arc of the Texas coastline represents a variety of interests. From fishing in Rockport to the beaches in Corpus Christi and Spring Break on Padre Island, Americans enjoy these amenities.  But the Texas coastline is also an economic powerhouse, with its ports delivering great value to our region and our Nation, as well as an aquatic ecosystem, which must withstand tropical storms and hurricanes and the environmental impact of industrial use.

Through the Southwestern Division’s Galveston District, the Corps is responsible for keeping waterways open for navigation and commerce. A priority is deepening and widening waterways, such as ports, ship channels, and the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, for the safe and expeditious accommodation of commercial waterborne traffic.  The Galveston District maintains 13 shallow draft ports and 15 deep draft ports, as well as the 423 miles long Texas portion of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, for a total of 760 miles of shallow draft and 240 miles of deep draft. 

The value this brings to our Nation is evident:

  • Texas Ports rank No. 1 in the U.S. in waterborne commerce handling almost 500 million tons of foreign and domestic cargo
  • Texas Ports represent 19% of all U.S. Port tonnage.
  • Texas Ports in the top 10 largest ports in the U.S.:
    •  Port of Houston,
    • Port of Corpus Christi,
    • Port of Beaumont,
    • Port of Texas City
  • The Port of Houston is first in the U.S. in imports and 2nd  in exports and total tonnage

Galveston District also maintains several Hurricane Protection Structures along the Texas Coast to protect both the residents and ports and industry from hurricanes.  The Hurricane Protection Structures are located in Port Arthur, Texas City, and Freeport.

The Texas Coast and the ports that line it continue to bring enduring value to our Nation, and the Corps will continue its strong partnership with local communities and industry  to have a huge impact on that  value. 

Galveston District Dredging Video