Company works to keep Great Lakes shipping lanes open

August 20, 2013

For more than two-and-a-half years the Essroc cement company has been unable to bring their product into the port of Rochester in bulk, because a buildup of river sediment prevented their cargo ship from docking.

That changed on Monday with the return of the Stephen B. Roman cargo freighter. It’s arrival marked the reopening of the channel, funded by a $1.5 million public-private partnership.

Stephen Murch of Essroc says it’s important for businesses across the upstate region, to keep the waterways open.                                                                                                           

“The marine mode of transportation is the most cost effective mode, and to be able to bring cement in in bulk as we do here, in large amounts, keeps the cost a very competitive cost for cement for all the projects that happen within Rochester and the region as well.”

Under the partnership with the City of Rochester and the Army Corp of Engineers, 200,000 cubic yards of sediment was dredged from the Genesee River. That’s equivalent to roughly 10,000 truckloads.