By PBN Staff
NORTH KINGSTOWN ‚Äď The Port of Davisville is the seventh-largest automobile importer in North America, according to Gov. Lincoln D. Chafee.
Chafee said 150,519 automobiles were imported at the port in 2011 ‚Äď the second consecutive year of double-digit percentage growth - and another 41,797 went to Davisville by rail. Chafee joined state officials and local business leaders in the announcement Tuesday at the port, which is located in Quonset Business Park. The port unveiled a new logo at the event, which incorporates a ‚ÄúQ‚ÄĚ with a teal-colored tail.
‚ÄúThe Port of Davisville ‚Äď as well as the entire Quonset Business Park ‚Äď is one of Rhode Island‚Äôs key assets,‚ÄĚ Chafee said. ‚ÄúLast year‚Äôs results put us ahead of Boston, Halifax, Philadelphia, Norfolk, Charlestown, Seattle ‚Äď among others ‚Äď as one of the premiere auto ports on the continent.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúBuilding on our success at Davisville aligns with my administration‚Äôs efforts to maximize Rhode Island‚Äôs assets and build on their success,‚ÄĚ he said. The port imported four times more cars in 2011 than 15 years earlier.
Quonset Business Park has more than 165 companies, employing about 8,800 people. Most of the vehicles that arrive at the park are processed, finished and distributed by North Atlantic Distribution, also a tenant at Quonset.
The governor expressed highlighted a provision included in his fiscal 2013 state budget allowing the Quonset Development Corporation to finance $7.5 million in debt to dredge a deeper and wider canal for ships to pass through. If approved by the General Assembly, the dredging would take start in October 2012 and is slated to take about a year, the news release said.
‚ÄúDue to the park‚Äôs military heritage, the public has a tendency to see the port and the park as two different entities ‚Äď Quonset and Davisville,‚ÄĚ said Steven J. King, managing director of the QDC. ‚ÄúWe wanted to find a way to show people that our success and future is linked together not only geographically, but also from a business sense.‚ÄĚ