In November 2017, CSX withdrew plans for an Intermodal Terminal between Rocky Mount and Battleboro. Today, (Thursday) the railroad and NC Department of Transportation officials announced plans for the multi-million dollar facility are back on.
The NC DOT said today they had reached an agreement with CSX to build and operate the Intermodal Terminal in Edgecombe County. The terminal will help industries more easily get products to customers and also spur growth in the region.
“This facility will make Eastern North Carolina even more attractive to businesses looking to grow by offering a logistical solution to industry shipping challenges,” said NCDOT Secretary Jim Trogdon. “We are pleased to help bring this intermodal facility to Eastern North Carolina.”
The facility, known as the Carolina Connector (CCX), will be built on the CSX mainline and CSX will run it. NCDOT will invest up to $118.1 million for site development and roadway construction. NCDOT conducted an economic impact evaluation in early June and determined the facility will have an indirect job impact of up to 1,300 jobs.
Once the contract is executed, site development work will begin with an anticipated completion date of 2020.
Originally, CSX intended to build what is called a “hub and spoke” intermodal facility in Rocky Mount but last November put those plans on hold as the company reassessed its long-term business model. Since then, North Carolina officials have remained in contact with CSX to ensure the North Carolina site remained in consideration.
The newly envisioned site will be a traditional intermodal site. The 330-acre site will allow trucks to bring cargo containers to a rail yard where they will be transferred to trains for transport. This facility will serve many industries with efficient access to rail.
“Getting products to the customer is paramount to any business’s success,” said Carolinas Gateway Partnership CEO and President Norris Tolson. “We at the Carolina Gateway Partnership are pleased that the CCX intermodal site will provide another vital link in the logistics solutions offered for our customer base in the Twin Counties and all of Eastern North Carolina. Edgecombe and Nash counties will now truly be a gateway to markets throughout the eastern part of the U.S.”
In January 2016, CSX announced plans to built the Carolina Connector beside I-95 between Selma and Micro with an opening date in 2019. The plans were later scuttled by the railroad due to opposition from local property owners and some local elected officials. The railroad later looked at a site south of Four Oaks but withdrew consideration because of strong opposition from residents.