Seattle, WA – The Puget Sound Regional Council has released a study that evaluates the effects of train traffic in the region should the proposed Gateway Pacific Terminal near Bellingham be built.
The facility, built and operated by Pacific International Terminals, would serve as a dry bulk commodity export-import facility located at Cherry Point, Washington, about 100 miles north of Seattle.
Regional cities such as Everett, Auburn, Algona, Pacific and Fife, the study found, would be affected by more trains servicing the proposed terminal, noting that as the regional economy expands, “the demand for freight and passenger rail will increase whether the proposed terminal is not built or not.”
The Gateway Pacific Terminal, it said, would primarily handle coal and grain exports and result in an additional 18 trains per day, each 1.6 miles long, running between the Powder River Basin in Montana and Wyoming through Washington.
The study found rail service is critical to maintaining the region’s growing economy and creating jobs. In 2012, the value of goods moving through the ports of Seattle, Tacoma and Everett were valued at more than $105 billion with exports accounting for nearly $40 billion of the total.