Yost Remarks: CSX Plans Will Further Globalize the Southeast

CSX InterrmodalLast month, Governor Pat McCrory joined officials from CSX Transportation in unveiling plans that will dramatically boost Southeastern North Carolina’s connections to the global economy. The first part involves a $160 multimodal terminal in Rocky Mount, an inland cargo hub that will transfer 260,000 containers between trucks and trains each year.

The facility, known as the Central Carolina Connector (CCX), will energize our region, giving businesses the ability to move products more quickly and efficiently. It also enhances our appeal as a destination for distribution centers and logistics operations  -- and the good-paying jobs that go with them. CCX will be an enormous benefit for the Port of Wilmington, providing the port with intermodal rail capacity, creating additional international shipping options and drawing additional traffic to the port.

The Port of Wilmington was the subject of a second announcement that day. CSX will launch new intermodal rail service between the Port of Wilmington and CSX's existing intermodal terminal in Charlotte. Known as the Queen City Express, the service will facilitate the efficient, cost-effective movement of goods between the global marketplace and one of the America’s largest cities – through the heart of our region.

Ninety percent of port customers need intermodal service, according to a survey by the State Ports Authority. The Wilmington port has already seen exciting growth in container traffic recently. The port’s capacity is rapidly improving with the help of  $100 million investment in infrastructure improvements.

Our organization advocated vocally for CSX and the State of North Carolina to move forward with CCX somewhere in eastern North Carolina, knowing it would ripple benefits well beyond the community hosting it. The Port of Wilmington has been a close working partner from our organization’s beginning. Economically, the port has always been a sleeping giant.

With these new developments, the pieces are quickly coming into place to energize our region’s global connections, boosting the capacity of all our counties to stake their ground in the drive for 21st century job growth.