NEW YORK state has given the thumbs up to a proposal to develop an inland port to connect shippers in the central part of the state to the port of New York and New Jersey by rail.
A feasibility study by the US Department of Transportation determined that out of three proposed sites for the Central New York Inland Port, the CSX DeWitt Yard just east of Syracuse, was the most viable alternative, reported IHS Media.
The yard was the only one of the three to have a reliable five-day-a-week rail service. CSX officials, who already run an intermodal container transfer facility on the site, have expressed an interest in offering such a service, the report said.
Located 260 miles from the port, the DeWitt site will serve shippers situated within a radius of 75 to 100 miles of the inland port, the report said. In 2012, the latest year for which statistics are available, 23,300 import TEU destined for the central New York region came through the port of New York and New Jersey, the report pointed out.
It concluded that if service were often and regular enough, the direct train link from the port of New York and New Jersey could shave US$500 off the current cost of between $1,000 and $1,300 to transport a container to or from the port by truck. The cost of moving a container by rail would be $700, plus $100 to dray the container to or from the shipper's location, the report said.
The DeWitt inland port would also support to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey's effort to reduce truck traffic to and from the port to lower congestion and pollution. The port has promoted the movement of cargo by rail and barges, instead of truck.