Madisonville, Louisiana is rich in boat and ship building history. In fact, the U.S. Navy built their vessels and repaired them in Madisonville during the War of 1812. Today plans were announced to reopen an unoccupied barge manufacturing plant on the Tchefuncte River in Madisonville.

The 230-acre plant was the home to a Trinity barge-manufacturing plant which closed its doors in 2015 when Trinity Marine Products announced the “demand for larger tank barges that transport oil is currently soft.”

“Due to encouraging conditions in the barge construction market, we are pleased that Arcosa Marine is restoring the Madisonville barge facility to full operation,” Arcosa Marine president Thomas Faherty said. “Arcosa Marine is preparing the facility to produce barges for customer delivery in 2019.”

Arcosa Marine Inc. will begin a $7.5 million renovation on the project and will hire approximately 149 employees. Gov. John Bel Edwards said the state will give them an incentive package that will include a workforce training program and Arcosa will also use the state’s Quality Jobs and Industrial Tax Exemption programs. They plan to install new equipment and upgrade the plant in order to produce barges.

“We are excited to welcome back the manufacturing operations of a marine mainstay in the St. Tammany Parish economy,” Edwards said in the news release. “Manufacturing jobs generate great economic activity and a high number of supporting jobs throughout the area. We’re encouraged by the return of barge manufacturing in Madisonville and hope that this new investment by Arcosa will lead to greater growth in the future.”

This is a great boost for the St. Tammany area economy. There will be an additional 236 indirect jobs for the region. The average annual salary for new jobs will be $51,400 plus benefits.

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