Quonset’s success as a leader in economic and industrial development has been driven in large part by our ability to anticipate, and then meet, the needs of the marketplace. Today, Quonset is positioned to become a hub for offshore wind in the Northeast as we anticipate the industry’s needs and prepare for its growth.
The Port of Davisville supports nearly 1,700 jobs, and $374.3 million in economic activity for Rhode Island annually. In the last 20 years, the Port has increased its annual imports by 745% and is home to one of the largest auto importers in North America.
The list of Quonset initiatives that put the Business Park ahead of the curve is a long one. Site Readiness (now a statewide model with 16 industrial sites enrolled in Rhode Island Ready), the Gateway Offices (at 100% occupancy even before completion) and the Flex Industrial Spaces (filled to capacity) have all been crucial to creating a platform for 13,000 jobs at 228 companies.
As we look to the future, offshore wind development is a clear path to economic growth for Rhode Island and Quonset will be at the forefront. The Quonset Multi-modal Off-shore Wind Transport Center (QMTC) will position Quonset as a wind energy hub for the North Atlantic. The current plans include an investment of $35 million to support the development, operations and maintenance of off-shore wind farms. The QMTC structure itself will be 146,250 s/f, including four aircraft hangars and space for eight tenants – all prepared to meet unique needs like docking crew transfer vessels and configuring the various components of offshore wind turbines.
Funding for the QMTC was included as part of QDC tenant Orsted’s bid for their Revolution Wind project. There is still work to be done, but we look forward to partnering with Orsted on this critical effort that will drive Rhode Island forward.
This is the next evolution of wind power for Rhode Island, and it is a tremendous opportunity for our state.
Steven King, PE, is the managing director of the Quonset Development Corp., North Kingstown, R.I.