FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Stu Nicholson
Critical Ohio Segment of CSX “National Gateway” Gets TIGER Grant Award
$98-Million Goes Toward Key Ohio-Pennsylvania Portion of Intermodal Corridor
(Columbus) – Ohio position as a strategic link in the nation’s movement of freight and the economy is again in evidence as the United States Department of Transportation has awards $98-million in Transportation Investment Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) funds for a critical three-state segment of the CSX “National Gateway” intermodal corridor project. The Ohio Rail Development Commission served as the lead sponsor for the grant.
These funds will be used to increase rail corridor clearances to help support new double-stack service from a $175 million intermodal facility being financed and built by CSX and its affiliates in North Baltimore, Ohio (near Toledo) to an existing terminal in Chambersburg, Pennsylvania (near Harrisburg). This service will make businesses across our region more competitive while taking trucks off the road and reducing harmful emissions.
“This is a project that is already generating construction jobs at the North Baltimore Intermodal Yard”, says ORDC Executive Director Matt Dietrich. “More construction and railroad jobs will follow with today’s TIGER grant award.”
The $98 Million awarded today will cover the federal portion of National Gateway clearance projects in Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia. These funds are in addition to state funds that have been allocated by Ohio and Pennsylvania to date, and will put citizens across the region to work enhancing our nation’s infrastructure. The Ohio Rail Development Commission is currently administering $5-million dollars for a series of rail safety improvements in and around North Baltimore.
This grant provides over 80% of the federal funds needed to clear the route from NW Ohio to Chambersburg. Gov. Strickland will be working with the National Gateway coalition to identify the $20 million in additional funds necessary to complete this segment of the project by 2012, as well as the remaining funds needed to ultimately provide double stack clearance to the ports in Baltimore, Norfolk, and Wilmington, NC.
“This award is a validation of the benefits of freight rail and the prominent role that railroads play in growing our economy and protecting our environment,” said Strickland. “With anticipated freight growth of 70 percent over the next two decades, the National Gateway is a timely and critical investment in our transportation infrastructure.”
“Ohio has made investments in a vast multi-modal transportation network for the movement of goods, and this project will further position our state as a national leader in logistics and distribution. Through this announcement and last month’s passenger rail awards, President Obama and Transportation Secretary LaHood have signaled their commitment to freight rail, passenger rail and multi-modal transportation opportunities that will move our state and country into the future.”
Benefits to Ohio (source CSX TIGER grant application)
- Creation of more than 20,000 jobs (construction, railroad and logistics)
- More than $400-million in savings in shipping and logistics costs
- Diverting over 2.2-million truckloads of freight off Ohio’s highways and reducing highway maintenance costs by $80-million
- Reducing CO2 emissions by 1.5-million tons
(The Ohio Rail Development Commission is an independent agency operating within the Ohio Department of Transportation. ORDC is responsible for economic development through the improvement and expansion of passenger and freight rail services and railroad grade crossing safety. For more information about what ORDC does for Ohio, visit our website at: http://www.dot.state.oh.us/Divisions/Rail )