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  September 21st, 2016 | Written by

SCPA Finalizes Plans to Construct Second Inland Port

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  • Construction of new inland port approved in the Carolinas I-95 Mega Site.
  • Inland Port Dillon will be diversification of South Carolina's logistics footprint.
  • Inland Port Dillon initial build out expected to accommodate 45,000 containers annually.

The South Carolina Ports Authority announced plans to develop a second inland port in Dillon, South Carolina, to support growth of intermodal container volumes and expand access to markets in neighboring states and throughout the northeast and midwest.

The SCPA Board of Directors unanimously approved a resolution authorizing the port to move forward with construction of the terminal in the Carolinas I-95 Mega Site. SCPA will break ground on the new terminal in the first quarter of 2017 and plans to open the facility by the end of the year.

“Inland Port Dillon will be a great diversification of our state’s logistics footprint,” said Jim Newsome, SCPA president and CEO. “Building intermodal infrastructure in our state goes hand-in-hand with the significant investment we are making to our port facilities in Charleston. This is an exciting opportunity for SCPA.”

Located in the Pee Dee region of South Carolina, the site was selected for its proximity to I-95, a critical transportation artery in the Southeast, as well as a significant base of existing port users in the area that represent base cargo opportunities for the facility.

“Selective development of inland infrastructure enables freight to move more easily and is critical to the growth of the port,” Newsome said. “We are grateful for the support of our local partners, including Marlboro Electric Cooperative, to make this project possible and are already working with a number of interested companies who are potential customers of the facility.”

Inland Port Greer has allowed the port to increase the cargo volumes moved by intermodal rail and become a key catalyst for economic development in the Upstate,” added Pat McKinney, SCPA board chairman. “We are confident that Inland Port Dillon will realize similar benefits for the port and our customers, increase local business opportunities and provide solid job growth. We appreciate the involvement and support of the state and federal agencies assisting the port to make this project a reality.”

The site is served by an existing CSX mainline, which provides overnight access to the Port of Charleston. With 166 percent growth of SCPA’s intermodal volume since 2011, demand for such inland facilities has increased rapidly.

“Expanding intermodal service in South Carolina through Inland Port Dillon will create a competitive advantage for area businesses by lowering transportation costs and providing greater access to domestic and international markets,” said Dean Piacente, CSX vice president, Intermodal. “This new facility will build on the state of South Carolina’s already strong freight rail network supporting continued business growth and job creation.”

A study of the market potential and proposed terminal layout was completed since the SCPA first announced its consideration of the Dillon site in April. The port will now move into the design phase of the project, with the initial terminal build out expected to accommodate 45,000 containers annually.