McKees Rocks to get $50 million rail/truck shipping facility
A $50 million facility that CSX Corp. plans to build in McKees Rocks for handling rail and truck cargo will help grease the region's economy, lowering transportation costs for businesses and serving as a magnet for manufacturers looking to relocate to an area where getting raw materials or shipping products to market would be easier.
The intermodal facility for transferring cargo containers between rail cars and trucks will be built on 70 acres that once served as a maintenance yard for the former Pittsburgh & Lake Erie Railroad, CSX said on Thursday, with construction scheduled to start in 2015 and finish in two years.
The project will generate 360 construction jobs, 80 transportation jobs on site and an estimated 100 related jobs in the area, CSX estimated.
The site runs parallel to West Carson Street, or Route 51, for about one mile in McKees Rocks and Stowe. It will be the only intermodal facility between Cleveland and Chambersburg in central Pennsylvania.
“This will help retain manufacturing jobs in the region and help make us an even more desirable place for manufacturing companies because it gives us a cost advantage over other regions,” said Allegheny County Chief Executive Rich Fitzgerald, who estimated the facility could cut company shipping costs by about 20 percent.
Neither CSX nor others involved in the project could quantify the full economic impact of the facility. Fitzgerald put it in “the multimillions.”
CSX owns the land involved, and government officials said the company is not receiving any incentives from Allegheny County or the state.
One of the potential beneficiaries is Lane Steel Co. Inc., a steel service center in McKees Rocks that processes flat-roll coils and sheet metal for end users all over the eastern United States. It buys raw materials from this region as well as from distant suppliers in the Midwest.
“It would save us money for the goods we buy from farther away because it would be very cost-competitive to receive it by rail,” said President Paul Gedeon.
CSX's 21,000-mile rail network connects to major markets throughout the eastern United States and links to about 240 short-line railroads and about 70 ocean, lake and river ports, giving customers access to markets across the country and around the globe, said CSX spokesman Robert Sullivan.
The facility also will provide retailers across the region with a more efficient means of receiving or shipping consumer products, said Taris Vrcek, executive director of the McKees Rocks Community Development Corp. His group is also behind the development of an adjacent industrial park expected to be shovel-ready for constructing buildings next spring.
“This intermodal facility is the biggest missing piece of a development puzzle that we have been assembling for over a decade,” said Vrcek, who has been trying to lure the CSX facility to McKees Rocks since 2003.
“Our bigger vision is to have the industrial park and the intermodal facility make this area a transportation hub,” he said.
The intermodal facility will be integrated with CSX's National Gateway project, an $850 million public-private partnership developing a double-stack rail corridor on CSX rails between the Mid-Atlantic and the Midwest.
The first phase of that corridor, which runs from Chambersburg to northwest Ohio, was completed in September, making double-stack rail transportation feasible.
Thomas Olson is a Trib Total Media staff writer. He can be reached at 412-320-7854 or email@example.com.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Nutritional supplement makers, led by GNC, want to create voluntary safety standards
- Smartphones expected to overtake desktops for holiday shopping
- Signs of steady U.S. economy: Pay, home sales up, unemployment applications down
- Union leaders warn Post-Gazette newsroom of possible layoffs
- Take steps to make it harder for holiday hackers
- Covestro leader MacCleary finds stability amid change
- Stocks finish flat before Thanksgiving holiday; energy firms give back some gains
- Many Black Friday deals not worth the hassle
- Plunge in apartment construction drags down October housing starts
- Pa. PUC looks to update safety rules for electric utilities
- Mall stores required to open for Thanksgiving