Port of Freeport

Freeport is a city in Brazoria CountyTexas within the Houston–Sugar Land–Baytown metropolitan area and is situated in Southeast Texas. As of the 2000 U.S. Census, the city population was 12,708.

The Dow Chemical Company is the major employer in Freeport, and the city is home to the company's largest integrated site. Freeport was officially founded in November 1912 by the Freeport Sulphur Company. The population was 300, however by 1929 that population grew to 3,500 and to 4,100 in 1939. Such a population growth also influenced a steady increase of economic expansion in Freeport.[5]

By 1937, a Freeport School District had been established which consisted of several segregated schools and twenty-seven teachers. There were two white schools, one black school, and a high school.[5]

Freeport's most substantial economic growth began with the construction of Dow Chemical Company facilities in the city during 1939. The company still provides the majority of economic resources for the community.[5] It is the largest single site of the company today.

In July 1957, Freeport merged with Velasco, Texas, the first capital of the Republic of Texas during the 19th century. Soon thereafter, Freeport's population numbered 11,619.[5] In 2003, the city annexed nearby Bryan Beach.

An important pillar of the economy is the Port of Freeport, a major seaport on the Gulf of Mexico. The associated chemical plants provide a stable and vibrant economy. Freeport is the site of the Dow Chemical Company's Texas Operations facility, which is the company's largest integrated site.[6]

Access to health – hospitals, clinics, types of practitioners, health issues

As of the census[2] of 2000, there were 12,708 people, 4,163 households, and 3,097 families residing in the city. The population density was 1,069.6 people per square mile (413.0/km²). There were 4,841 housing units at an average density of 407.5 per square mile (157.3/km²). The racial makeup of the city was 61.55% White, 13.38% African American, 0.56% Native American, 0.35% Asian, 0.01% Pacific Islander, 20.91% from other races, and 3.24% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 52.05% of the population.

There were 4,163 households out of which 45.9% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 51.6% were married couples living together, 16.8% had a female householder with no husband present, and 25.6% were non-families. 21.6% of all households were made up of individuals and 7.9% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 3.05 and the average family size was 3.59.

In the city the population was spread out with 35.7% under the age of 18, 10.9% from 18 to 24, 28.4% from 25 to 44, 16.9% from 45 to 64, and 8.1% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 27 years. For every 100 females there were 100.0 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 121.2 males.

The median income for a household in the city was $30,245, and the median income for a family was $32,421. Males had a median income of $30,714 versus $17,028 for females. The per capita income for the city was $12,426. About 22.3% of families and 22.9% of the population were below thepoverty line, including 28.1% of those under age 18 and 7.2% of those age 65 or over.

Schools in Freeport include Brazosport High School (Grades 9-12), Freeport Intermediate School (Grades 7-8), Lanier Middle School (Grades 5-6), O.A. Fleming Elementary School, Jane Long Elementary School, and Velasco Elementary School (Grades Pre-K-4). They are all maintained through the Brazosport Independent School District. Many athletics events for the district take place in Freeport at Hopper Field.

Since the late 1990s, several schools have been rebuilt or are currently being rebuilt due to old age. Such schools include Freeport Intermediate School, O.A. Fleming Elementary School, Velasco Elementary School, and Brazosport High School.

The city is served by the Brazosport College.

The Freeport Library is a part of the Brazoria County Library System.

Port Freeport is located on the in southwestern coast of Texas 60 miles south of Houston on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway. It is part of the Houston-Sugarland-Baytown Metropolitan Area. Part of today’s Brazosport industrial complex, it was originally developed to be a deepwater port.

The treaty ending the Texas Revolution was signed in the nearby town of Velasco, which was annexed into the Port of Freeport in 1957. In 2000, almost 13 thousand people lived in the Port of Freeport. The area was settled in 1898 but not officially founded until 1912 by commercial interests wanting to exploit the local sulfur deposits.

Today’s Port Freeport’s economy is based on the processing and export of gasoline and chemicals. It also supports a sizeable commercial shrimp fishing industry and is home to one of the largest shrimp-trawler fleets in the world. Immediately to the east is a large saltwater conversion plant.


Description, importance, any other relevance The Freeport Liberty Ship Reef Complex is a story of tragedy and trash turned into treasure. This wide-ranging collection of shipwrecks and man-made reefs provides a sheltered habitat for fish and marine life in an area of the Gulf of Mexico that naturally affords no protection at all.

Where once there was only barren sand, the park’s attractions are now encased by a living skin of soft corals. Among the twisted refuse of industry and disaster, schools of grunts seek shelter while predatory amberjack seek prey. It’s an active oasis of marine life that began with a deadly accident.

Port of Freeport

A locally-elected Port Commission governs Port Freeport, which contains 186 acres of developed and almost eight thousand acres of undeveloped land. Convenient to rail, highway, and water routes, Port Freeport offers 14 public and private berths with an amazing 70-foot draft. The Freeport Harbor Channel is 45 feet deep. Port Freeport also contains a climate-controlled facility. In the future, Port Freeport plans to have a 1300-acre multi-modal facility, two multi-purpose berths with 50-foot draft, and two 120 thousand foot transit sheds at the docks.

Three thousand vessels call at Port Freeport each year representing trading partners from Brazil, Central America, Nigeria, and Saudi Arabia. The major import commodities entering Port Freeport are aggregate, chemicals, clothing, foods, paper goods, and plastics. The top exports leaving Port Freeport are automobiles, chemicals, clothing, foods, paper goods, and plastics.

Port Freeport handles about 75 thousand TEUs of containerized cargo each year and about 33 million tons of cargo. Trade moving through Port Freeport represents an annual $9 billion US, over 11 thousand direct jobs, and almost 15 thousand induced jobs. Port Freeport is Texas’ second largest destination for containerized cargo. Three miles from deep water, it offers abundant container storage space and parcels of land for specialized container operations.

Port Freeport is an autonomous governmental entity authorized by an act of the Texas Legislature in 1925.

Governing Body
Port Freeport is governed by a Port Commission that serve six-year staggered terms. The Port Commissioners are elected by local residents. 

Port Freeport land and operations currently include 186 acres of developed land and 7,723 acres of undeveloped land, 14 operating berths (public and private docks), a climate-controlled facility, a 45-foot deep Freeport Harbor Channel and a 70-foot-deep berthing area.  Future expansion includes building a 1,300-acre multi-modal facility, two multi-purpose 1,200-foot berths on 50 feet of water and two dockside 120,000 square-foot transit sheds. Port Freeport is conveniently accessible by rail, waterway and highway routes.  

There is direct access to the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, Brazos River Diversion Channel, State Highways 36 & 288 and rail service provided by the Union Pacific Railroad.

Port Ranking
16th in the US in foreign tonnage
27th in the US in total tonnage

4.0 million tons domestic 
27.3 million tons total (public and private docks) 

Vessel Calls
3,000/year (including barge/tug calls) 


Truck Traffic
155,000/ year (public/private)

Railcar Transits
50,000/ year (public/private)

Economic Impact
$10.2 billion annually 
11,696 direct jobs, 13,735 induced jobs 


Top Trading Partners 
Brazil, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Iraq, Mexico, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, Venezuela

Top Import Commodities 
Aggregate, Chemicals, Clothing, Crude, Foods, LNG, Paper Goods, Resins, Windmills 

Top Export Commodities
Autos, Chemicals, Clothing, Foods, Paper Goods, Resins, Rice 

Top Import Countries 
Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Mexico

Top Export Countries 
Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Honduras, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia

Environmental Quality/ Monitors / Contamination remediation

    Air, water soil quality