Barge Leaves Brewer for Texas 

Months of hard work paid off today for folks in the City of Brewer and at the Cianbro Corporation.The first modules from the company’s Brewer manufacturing facility left for Texas Thursday.Amy Erickson has the story.”It was incredible coming under the bridge. I got some great pictures. Totally incredible.”Grace Clement and scores of others lined the shore from Orrington to Bucksport Thursday…waiting for a the 354-foot barge, the “Columbia Boston”, to make its way down the Penobscot River.”I’ve worked around boats before and I know how incredible it is to move something that large.”The barge is transporting the first of the 53 modules being assembled at the new Cianbro facility in Brewer.They’re bound for Texas, where they’ll be part of an oil refinery expansion.Brewer City Councilor Larry Doughty calls it a historic day for Maine…since the partnership between the city, the state and Cianbro helped transform the shuttered Eastern Fine paper mill into a thriving manufacturing site that’s employing more than 400 people….”who’d ever guess the old paper mill would turn into such a plant as Cianbro’s modules? It’s unbelieveable what’s happened there.””it’s a huge coup. I keep saying it put South Brewer on the map…it put Brewer on the map, but South Brewer…it’s a great recognition of the city, period.”Officials from Brewer and Cianbro climbed aboard Coast Guard cutters today to accompany the barge on the first part of its journey.It’ll reach Port Arthur, Texas in about 20 days.Folks like Clement, who came out to see the barge for themselves, say it represents hope that more large-scale, high-profile projects can become reality in Maine…and in turn, create much-needed jobs.”I just really think it’s a great thing Cianbro’s doing, creating all these jobs.””Everyone that’s been involved with this has worked hard on the city side of it…and we’re also very happy and pleased with Pete Vigue. He’s done a tremendous job.”Workers at the Brewer site will build 53 modules before the 7 billion dollar expansion project is completed.If you didn’t get to check out the barge on its voyage Thursday, there will be be other chances.The folks at Cianbro tell us they expect to send shipments every four to six weeks over the next year or so.Amy Erickson, WABI TV5 News, Brewer.