Florida surpassed New York as the third largest state by population, and is the main anchor for the fast-growing Southeast region. Florida’s geographic location positions it to be a major player in the global distribution network, both as a consumer market and major exporter with strong linkages throughout the region.
The state of Florida is projected to spend approximately $3.5 billion over the next five years on capital improvements and upgrades to its 15 seaports across the state. Most of this money will go to the state’s five busiest seaports, including Jacksonville, Everglades, Canaveral, Tampa and Miami. Improvements, like harbor and channel deepening, are being made to position Florida as a major gateway for international trade. The Port of Miami’s $205 million dredging project is expected to be completed this summer. Miami’s new 50-foot depths will mean the port will be able to accommodate new ultra-large container ships when they begin transiting the expanded Panama Canal in 2016. Once completed, the Port of Miami will be the only major logistics hub south of Virginia capable of handling fully laden post-Panamax vessels which will be a major draw to importers.