Georgia's Newest Inland Port (aka intermodal yard)

BNSF FAN Aug 27, 2018

  1. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    In what I see as yet another great government decision, Georgia's newest inland port (what we railfans have known for years as intermodal yards) has opened in Northern Georgia. The strategic placement of this yard escapes my simple mind. It's located along CSX's K&A subdivision about 10 miles or so south of the Tennessee Georgia boarder and maybe 5 to 10 mile north of the sprawling metropolis of Chatsworth Georgia which has a population of maybe 5000 people. This location is maybe 20 to 25 miles of mostly 2 lane roads between interstate access in Dalton GA and the port location along US Highway 411. Doesn't really sound that bad does it? Well, the CSX K&A sub was downgraded by CSX a couple of years ago as eastern Kentucky coal was it's number one traffic and that had all but dried up so it's now a low traffic line from Cincinnati through Knoxville to the Atlanta area. It also made the list of lines that CSX would consider selling off. US Highway 411 is a mix of 2 lane and 4 lane and it is about an hour and a half south along it to the metro Atlanta area and about the same north to Knoxville TN. It's a road that doesn't see that much truck traffic as it is since there are not a great number of industries along this route once you get away from the big metro areas. In contrast, that 20 to 25 miles west to Interstate 75 brings you over to the CSX W&A sub and NS Georgia division lines that run between Chattanooga and Atlanta. This CSX line, while not truly busy, does see a fair amount of traffic and the NS line is a very busy route. Along one of these lines right off the interstate just seems like it would have made much more sense but I'll leave it to you all to show me what I'm missing. Enjoy!


    https://www.ajc.com/business/ports-...rth-georgia-mountains/d6DXdIKxw5nFYUPAkFsuPM/
     
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  2. RCMan

    RCMan TrainBoard Member

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    Been by it many times.

    The location is confusing to me. It is out away from everything. Only one 2 lane road(North & South), no fuel stations, restaurants, etc. Any interstate road is many miles away.

    It would have been better to go about 30 miles more north and put it in Polk County Tennessee where the roads are 4 lane undivided and divided in all 4 directions.

    Guess Georgia wanted to keep all the revenue it could in the state.
     
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  3. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Sounds nuts. Maybe it was the only spot that could be found where the local community didn't howl. Perhaps five years ago CSX tried to gain zoning support for an intermodal facility between Columbia and Charlotte along I-77 and their Atlanta/Hamlet, NC main. Despite the rural location with high unemployment, forces opposing construction united against CSX. After numerous failed attempts at negotiating a settlement, CSX threw in the towel and nothing was ever built.
     
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  4. Hytec

    Hytec TrainBoard Member

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    The major problem with the NIMBY culture is that they are incapable of reading and understanding history, and equally incapable of forecasting second and third order effects of their emotional reactions.
     
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  5. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    Too, I think "municipal extortion" is a significant expense these days. Various politicians step forward to oppose change under the guise of environmental impact or community safety, but what they really want is headlines and cash under the table. We saw this criminality by elected officials in full bloom during Conrail's purchase by NS and CSX, and I saw it again in suburban Chicago when the CN moved to merge the EJ&E. One village sought to block the merger because the CN would suddenly run so many through trains as to block a crossing and keep paramedics from their calls. Right.
     
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  6. mmi16

    mmi16 TrainBoard Member

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    As a 'port' most of the boxes will be hauled to/from the real ports of Charleston and Savannah. Don't know that the rail facilities between those locations and Atlanta can handle much in the way of traffic.
     
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  7. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    I like this wording. It really reflects today's situations quite well. (y)
     
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  8. RCMan

    RCMan TrainBoard Member

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    Another thought, This is on Highway US411. It is 2 lane road north and south at the inland port location. US411 north stays 2 lane until you reach Ocoee Tennessee. US411 south it changes to 4 lane undivided north on Eton. Tennessee passed laws several years ago allowing towns to reduce speed limits several miles from the actual towns, but still within the city limits, so you will go from 65mph to 45mph or lower 4-5 miles from the city center. Truckers liked the road before this change and now only use I-75.
    If going south the only option is Chatsworth GA. to US-76 to I-75 and to Chattanooga, which is another traffic problem.

    Also noticed the new inland port was put on a piece of land which is part of the Chattahoochee National forest, how did they get that changed?
     
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  9. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    South Carolina chose Greer, SC for one of its inland ports. It's in the upstate between Greenville and Spartanburg near the BMW plant and has been a superb locale, handling 9,800 containers in July alone. NS runs a daily train in both directions to serve it. Total July volume at all South Carolina ports, including Charleston, was 114,000 containers. There's a new inland port planned at Dillon, SC along the ACL main. I'm not sure what to make of this choice, as it's only 130 miles from Charleston. It's an economically depressed area of the state.
     
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  10. BoxcabE50

    BoxcabE50 Staff Member TrainBoard Supporter

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    You might have accidentally hit upon the attempted reasoning for this choice- A desperate attempt to create some jobs and bump up area economics. :(
     
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  11. BNSF FAN

    BNSF FAN TrainBoard Supporter

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    That is probably part of it.
     
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  12. Hardcoaler

    Hardcoaler TrainBoard Member

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    I think y'all are likely correct. The spot is rather close to Port, a straight shot north up I-95.
     

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