Norfolk Southern’s Birmingham Regional Intermodal Facility is now open

NS officials said the $97.5 million facility is part of the $2.5 billion Crescent Corridor initiative, which aims to establish an efficient, high-capacity intermodal freight rail route between the Gulf Coast and the Northeast. This facility is located on a 316-acre site in McCalla, Alabama.

By ·

Roughly 16 months after breaking ground, Class I railroad carrier Norfolk Southern said this week that the Birmingham Regional Intermodal Facility is now open.

NS officials said the $97.5 million facility is part of the $2.5 billion Crescent Corridor initiative, which aims to establish an efficient, high-capacity intermodal freight rail route between the Gulf Coast and the Northeast. This facility is located on a 316-acre site in McCalla, Alabama. 

“There is no other intermodal rail public-private project today that compares with the magnitude of the Crescent Corridor in terms of job creation or environmental benefits,” NS CEO Wick Moorman said. “Because of its strategic location and the growing intermodal demands throughout the country, the Birmingham terminal will serve as a major gateway for truck-competitive freight moving between the South and Northeast and enable NS to launch new service from Birmingham to the Northeast and to Mexico.

Moorman added that there is no other intermodal rail public-private project today that compares with the magnitude of the Crescent Corridor in terms of job creation or environmental benefits.  And he said that because of its strategic location and the growing intermodal demands throughout the country, the Birmingham terminal will serve as a major gateway for truck-competitive freight moving between the South and Northeast and enable NS to launch new service from Birmingham to the Northeast and to Mexico. 

This facility is expected to create 8,600 jobs in Central Alabama in the next ten years, with capacity expected to handle 165,000 containers and trailers on an annual basis.

NS added that this terminal will use sophisticated gate and terminal automation technology that is said shortens waiting time for trucks entering the terminal and reduces emissions and improves truck driver productivity.

Launched in June 2007, the Crescent Corridor is a public-private partnership (PPP) to build a rail corridor spanning from Louisiana to New Jersey. NS officials said this endeavor will expand and improve its rail network from the northeast to the southeast, expedite the delivery of cargo shipments, and reduce highway congestion by diverting truck traffic. When it is completed, NS said it will stretch across 2,500 miles from New Orleans to Newark, N.J. and run through New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Maryland, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Georgia, Alabama, and Louisiana.

The Crescent Corridor’s first phase is expected to be completed by 2013.

The Birmingham Regional Intermodal Facility is the second of four new intermodal terminals that are part of the Crescent Corridor initiative to open, with the Memphis facility becoming operational in July and Birmingham’s regional sister facility in Greencastle, Pa. set to open in January. NS said that construction on a new terminal in Charlotte, N.C. began earlier this year.

“[These] corridors are focused on increasing rail capacity for freight currently moving by truck,” NS spokesperson Susan Terpay told LM in a previous interview. “And to be able to do that, we need to have these terminals up and running. We are still in the process of constructing the terminals to accomplish that task.”

NS cited the following as benefits of the Crescent Corridor upon its completion:
-$326 million in tax revenues to states and communities;
-1.3 million long-haul trucks diverted from interstates;
-$146 million in accident avoidance savings;
-1.9 million tons in CO2 reduction;
-$575 million in congestion savings;
-$92 million in highway maintenance savings; and
-169 million gallons in fuel savings.


About the Author

Jeff Berman, Group News Editor
Jeff Berman is Group News Editor for Logistics Management, Modern Materials Handling, and Supply Chain Management Review. Jeff works and lives in Cape Elizabeth, Maine, where he covers all aspects of the supply chain, logistics, freight transportation, and materials handling sectors on a daily basis. Contact Jeff Berman

Subscribe to Logistics Management Magazine!

Subscribe today. It's FREE!
Get timely insider information that you can use to better manage your entire logistics operation.
Start your FREE subscription today!

Latest Whitepaper
B2B Sellers Prefer a Unified Approach for Ecommerce
A new study from Forrester Consulting, commissioned by NetSuite, found that many midmarket, B2B sellers say their ecommerce solutions have contributed to their growth in sales, new customer acquisitions and improved customer relationships.
Download Today!
From the August 2016 Issue
A growing number of low-cost lift trucks offer new avenues for pairing equipment and applications, but less cautious buyers might find that small up-front costs come at a steep price. Selecting the proper lift truck, lift truck tips 2016, Choosing the right Lift Truck
Megatrends in ocean freight
Ocean Cargo Roundtable: What’s in store for 2017?
View More From this Issue
Subscribe to Our Email Newsletter
Sign up today to receive our FREE, weekly email newsletter!
Latest Webcast
Getting the most out of your 3PL relationship
Join Evan Armstrong, president of Armstrong & Associates, as he explains how creating a balanced portfolio of "Top 50" global and domestic partners can maximize efficiency and mitigate risk.
Register Today!
EDITORS' PICKS
2016 Quest for Quality: Winners Take the Spotlight
Which carriers, third-party logistics providers and U.S. ports have crossed the service-excellence...
Regional ports concentrate on growth and connectivity
With the Panama Canal expansion complete, ocean cargo gateways in the Caribbean are investing to...

Digital Reality Check
Just how close are we to the ideal digital supply network? Not as close as we might like to think....
Top 25 ports: West Coast continues to dominate
The Panama Canal expansion is set for late June and may soon be attracting more inbound vessel calls...