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Port board approves lease agreement for housing facility

Last Modified: Wednesday, June 12, 2013 11:30 PM

By Lance Traweek / American Press

The Port of Lake Charles’ board of commissioners on Wednesday unanimously approved a lease option agreement with a private company that plans to build housing on port property to meet the area’s projected workforce demands.

The construction of the temporary employee village is expected to bring in 400 jobs. But once completed, in June 2014, it could be home to as many as 4,000 construction workers.

Greenfield Logistical Solutions of Louisiana LLC will build the $70 million facility on 200 acres of port land off La. 397, a mile south of Interstate 10 at the Industrial Park East.

Details of the plans, which include a baseball field, basketball courts and several different dining options, were first released in April.

The plan includes daily meals and transportation to and from work for residents. GLS is looking at having five double-decker buses that can transport 80 people per bus.

That will be 80 fewer cars per bus on the road going to the various sites, said Executive Director Bill Rase. Rent will be $130 per day.

Through the lease agreement, the port is set to make $360,000 per year, as well as a percentage from the amount of “heads on beds,” Rase said after the meeting. The port will get a dollar a day for each resident. At full capacity the port could profit an additional $1.46 million a year.

“Not only is it good for the dollars and cents for the port, but we feel it’s very valuable to the community in order to help offset some of the workers that will be coming into the area,” Rase told the board of commissioners.

Over the next five years, more than 15,000 construction jobs are expected to come from the more than $47 billion worth of investments in Southwest Louisiana.

It’s a four-year lease with three one-year options attached to it. GLS anticipates breaking ground in August or September, Rase said, and the lease will take effect at that time. Unit fabrication will be done in Houston and set up in Lake Charles in three phases.

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