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Press Release

U.S. Department of Commerce Invests $4.5 Million to Convert Former Naval Station Roosevelt Roads to Commercial Use

WASHINGTON – Today, U.S. Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross announced that the Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) is awarding a $4.5 million grant to the Local Redevelopment Authority for Roosevelt Roads, San Juan, Puerto Rico, to rehabilitate a building and make other infrastructure improvements on former Naval Station Roosevelt Roads. The EDA grant will support early-stage businesses focused on the visitor economy and is expected to create 134 jobs and spur $1.5 million in private investment. The project will be matched with $1.25 million in local funds.

“The Trump Administration is committed to assisting Puerto Rico as they work to recover from the 2017 hurricanes,” said Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross. “The redevelopment of the Roosevelt Roads Naval Station will bring businesses back to a vital waterfront area.”

“This investment will rehabilitate Roosevelt Road’s Port Control Building for use as a multi-tenant, commercial space that will house early-stage tourism businesses,” said Dana Gartzke, Performing the Delegated Duties of the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development. “The project will also improve streets and sidewalks to facilitate pedestrian and vehicle traffic between the commercial site and the ferry terminal.”

“We thank the Trump Administration and Secretary Ross for awarding this important EDA grant to Roosevelt Roads,” said Governor Vázquez Garced. “As the island continues to combat the COVID-19 pandemic, we must take proactive measures to alleviate the economic damage caused by previous natural disasters. We will continue to work with the U.S. Department of Commerce to ensure a full recovery for the island.”

“This is an important economic boost that assists with the revitalization of the Roosevelt Roads base at the town of Ceiba,” said the resident commissioner, Jenniffer González Colón. “I am thankful for the collective effort to work on this initiative after we secured some of these funds with the Bipartisan Budget Law of 2018. This adds up to other efforts we have led such as the language incorporation into the conference report on the National Defense Authorization (NDAA) Law of 2020 that commits the federal government to collaborate with local and private stakeholders to effectively address economic challenges and opportunities in Vieques, Culebra and the adjacent communities of the former Naval Base Roosevelt Roads.”

This project is funded under the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (Pub. L. 116-20) (PDF), in which Congress appropriated to EDA $600 million in additional Economic Adjustment Assistance (EAA) Program (PDF) funds for disaster relief and recovery as a result of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria, wildfires, and other calendar year 2017 natural disasters under the Stafford Act.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (
The mission of the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) is to lead the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing the nation's regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. An agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce, EDA makes investments in economically distressed communities in order to create jobs for U.S. workers, promote American innovation, and accelerate long-term sustainable economic growth.

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