August 15th marked the Centennial of the inauguration of the Panama Canal.
U. of FL in Gainsville: Panama and the Canal
Under Panamanian leadership, the canal has not merely been maintained as one of the world’s premier shipping routes. It has been transformed from a staid state-owned public utility, with its quasi-socialist “zone” for employees, to a modern business that aims to maximize revenues and compete internationally. The privatization of the ports on both coasts and the railroad that runs alongside the waterway, as well as the construction of a third set of locks, are testaments to the visionary and entrepreneurial thinking that Panamanian ownership has brought.
Of course, no roundup would be complete without The Tailor of Panama, in book and film.
The 100th anniversary of the opening of the Panama Canal, hailed at the time as one of the world’s great wonders, has inspired a celebration in central Florida to showcase the experience of the US canal workers behind the engineering feat.
Fresno Bee:At age 100, Panama Canal looks to the future
To fuel that growth, the canal is in the midst of an expansion that includes new channels on both ends and state-of-the-art locks that will allow bigger, wider and heavier ships to transit the waterway.
Quijano, who is in charge of the autonomous government agency that oversees canal operations, said the expansion represents “the next 100 years of the canal.”
The $5.25 billion project was initially supposed to be completed to coincide with the canal’s 100th anniversary. But a dispute with the contractor, weather and delay in finding the right concrete mix for the new locks have pushed the completion date to December 2015 with commercial traffic beginning in 2016.
International Business Times: Panama Canal Anniversary 2014: 100 Years Ago Today, Navigation Project Launched “American Century
Mashable photos: The Panama Canal, Then and Now
BBC: My Panama Canal
The Panama Canal has been described as one of the wonders of the modern world. Cutting a swathe through the landscape, the canal connected the Pacific and Atlantic oceans for the first time 100 years ago. Today, the waterway provides employment and inspiration. Four people talk about their Panama Canal.