From the city’s industrial underbelly to the bluffs of Jefferson County, there are big plans afoot these days along the Mississippi River.
Port officials such as Williams, Wilmsmeyer and Govero are pushing ahead with major investments. Several private companies are upgrading their docks, too. Studies are under way on how to better integrate the region’s freight and logistics networks. And all of it is aimed at making the dirty, slow river into a bigger asset in today’s just-in-time global economy, reconnecting the region to its very reason for being.
From a big expansion of the Panama Canal to worldwide demand for what’s grown in America’s breadbasket to a slow but steady reshoring of manufacturing from Asia back to the West, the contours of how goods move across the globe are shifting in ways that could make an old river town more central to the world’s commerce once more.