Speeding Transport Right through the Heart

The Heartland Corridor is a proposed direct cargo route from Norfolk, Va., to Columbus, Ohio, and from there on to Chicago. In seeking funding for the estimated $266 million project, which is in preliminary stages, agencies involved point out that the Corridor would integrate water, rail and truck container movement, cutting 233 miles and 1-1/2 days of shipping time between a deep water port and inland terminal transport.

Initial work would focus on permitting the movement of double-stacked trains by upgrading 28 rail tunnels and eliminating some 24 overhead obstructions.

A new intermodal ramp site to handle 30,000 containers a year would be built at Prichard, WV Projections are for Rickenbacker International Airport at Columbus to handle 250,000 containers each year.

Initial planners of the Corridor include the Port of Huntington (WV) Tri-State Intermodal Group; Kanawha Valley (WV) Local Port Authority District; the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers; West Virginia’s Public Port Authority; the Virginia Inland Port; the Port of Virginia; Appalachian Regional Commission; and the Ohio Rail Development Commission.

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