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CSX will develop a major freight-rail intermodal terminal in Johnston County, N.C., the company and Gov. Pat McCrory announced yesterday.The proposed "Carolina Connector," or CCX, will serve as an intermodal transportation hub in the south, transferring a range of goods — from food to furniture to appliances — between trucks and trains, CSX officials said in a press release."We are excited about developing infrastructure within North Carolina that makes the state's ports more competitive, lowers transportation costs for business, and promotes reliance on freight rail, the most fuel efficient and environmentally-friendly form of land transportation," said Louis Renjel, CSX vice president, strategic infrastructure initiatives.The estimated cost to build the project is $272 million. CSX has pledged to invest $150 million, and the project is contingent on securing a $100 million in infrastructure investment funds that have been proposed in the state's Strategic Transportation Investment (STI) process, CSX officials said.The project has been submitted for STI funding, according to the governor's office."The CCX will maximize both public and private investments for economic development and job creation, precisely what was envisioned when I worked with the General Assembly to develop the STI law and scoring process," said McCrory in a press release.The new terminal is expected to spur economic development and an estimated $329 million in public benefits to North Carolina, according to CSX and state officials.North Carolina Transportation Secretary Nick Tennyson said the project will have a major impact on the state’s ports and rail systems. CCX will link the North Carolina State Port at Wilmington with businesses from the Piedmont to the coast, transporting shipping containers over the nationwide rail network.
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