Historic Purchase Agreement to Benefit Port Fourchon and Community at Large
CUT OFF, LA – The Greater Lafourche Port Commission, Caillouet Land, LLC, and the Caillouet family announced today they have entered into a purchase agreement which will result in the Port Commission purchasing over 850 acres of land south of Leeville, most notably including all Caillouet-owned industrial property in Port Fourchon.
According to GLPC Executive Director Chett Chiasson, the $36.7 million purchase will bring an immediate $1.4 million annual net benefit when considering yearly rent savings and new rent collections.
“More than anything else, on behalf of the Commissioners and myself, I want to thank the Caillouet family for being so supportive of Port Fourchon through the years,” Chiasson said. “Both parties gave this agreement great thought, and we mutually felt this was the best way forward for Port Fourchon as we embark on an ambitious future of growth and tremendous promise.”
GLPC Board President Chuckie Cheramie added, “This is a great day for the port and this area in general. This will truly be a beneficial deal that will have a positive impact on our area starting today and for many years to come.”
The purchase will include unrestricted access to Fourchon Island, paving the way for construction of a new Fourchon Bridge, and will leave the Port Commission as the exclusive manager of all industrial property situated within Port Fourchon.
The new Fourchon Bridge will connect Port Fourchon with the nearly 1000-acre Fourchon Island project, which will provide more expansive industrial access to the Gulf of Mexico, increasing harbor depths to accommodate larger vessels, rigs, platforms, and a burgeoning offshore wind energy marketplace.
“Due to the financial discipline and keen insight of our Board of Commissioners, the stage was set for this moment in time,” Chiasson said. “We have continued to budget conservatively each year, putting us in the financial position to make this investment in our community. This practice has allowed us to weather difficult times. In addition to accommodating requests for short-term rental adjustments in order to maintain the services offered by our tenants, we have been able to strategically leverage our funds into better grant-matching opportunities and, ultimately, this significant land acquisition which benefits Port Fourchon and our entire region.”
The land being purchased has been owned by the Caillouet Family since 1895. In 1962, the family donated about seven acres of land to improve navigation in Bayou Lafourche. A year later, an additional 160 acres was donated by the family to enable the creation of Port Fourchon.
The sale, which is expected to close within the next several months, will leave the Caillouet family with about 165 acres in the vicinity of Fourchon Beach that are intended to be donated to the State of Louisiana for the creation of a state park. With the construction of the new Fourchon Bridge, the park will provide open space and recreational areas for public enjoyment. The funding mechanism and land acceptance for the proposed Caillouet-Fourchon State Park will be put before the Louisiana Legislature for consideration in its upcoming session, and the parties anticipate finalizing the donation later this year.
“The generosity of the Caillouet family’s planned donation of this land to potentially create Louisiana’s 22nd state park will provide people with additional options for exploring our Louisiana coastline. While the planning process is still underway, this area could prove beneficial to families looking for a fishing excursion or just simply a beautiful place to camp along the shores of the Gulf of Mexico,” said Lieutenant Governor Billy Nungesser.
Tom Durel, President of Caillouet Land added, “Through these actions the Caillouet Family expresses appreciation to the men and women of lower Lafourche who over the years have helped preserve and make Fourchon into the major economic enterprise it is. The Caillouet-Fourchon State Park will celebrate their side-by-side achievements of conservation and industry.”
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