Port acquires 24 acres in N. Lewiston

By Elaine Williams of the Tribune

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

The Port of Lewiston is acquiring 24 acres in North Lewiston that belong to Twin City Foods, but the deal does not include any of the pea processor’s downtown Lewiston land, which hasn’t changed hands, according to the Nez Perce County Assessor’s office.

Port of Lewiston commissioners approved the transaction at a meeting Tuesday. The land is north of Down River Road across from the Nez Perce County jail and west of the Old Spiral Highway.

No one has any immediate plans to locate on the site, but the purchase makes sense for the port for a variety of reasons, said David Doeringsfeld, manager of the Port of Lewiston.

The land is adjacent to existing port holdings and is relatively flat compared with much of the surrounding terrain. The port was able to get a good price, paying $435,792 that will be spread into acquisitions of about 51/2 acres each over a period of three years, Doeringsfeld said.

In other business, the port awarded a $220,000 contract to Berger-Abam, a firm in Federal Way, Wash., to design an extension of the port’s container dock.

The expansion of the dock would more than double its length to 270 feet. The extra space would enable the port to load and unload two vessels instead of one at once.

The majority of the money for the design is coming from a Idaho rural block grant with the remainder provided by a federal allocation and the port.

So far the port hasn’t received any money to build the dock expansion, which has a total price tag of $2.7 million. It’s looking at a variety of sources including federal stimulus package dollars.

Still, proceeding with the design makes sense because lawmakers and grant appropriators are more likely to fund projects when they know how something will be built and how much it will cost, Doeringsfeld said.

Williams may be contacted at [email protected] or (208) 848-2261.