Wednesday, January 16, 2013

CN, Indiana Rail Road plan intermodal venture

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CN and the Indiana Rail Road Co. on Wednesday announced plans to construct an intermodal terminal in Indianapolis, designed to offer Indiana importers and exporters an all-rail option for containerized products moving to and from Asia.

CN serves the Port of Vancouver and the Port of Prince Rupert, both in British Columbia, which handle a wide range of container shipping lines that offer scheduled service from all major Asian ports.

"CN is pleased to enter into this partnership with the Indiana Rail Road," said Jean-Jacques Ruest, CN executive vice-president and chief marketing officer. "This all-rail service will reduce transit times and improve transportation consistency for Indiana importers, making their supply chains more competitive. CN's level-of-service agreements with the container terminal operators at Vancouver and Prince Rupert deliver superior fluidity from ship-to-rail at the ports."

"This is a great day for Indianapolis-area importers and exporters who for years have asked for all-rail, direct-west coast intermodal service to the city," said Tom Hoback, INRD founder, president, and CEO. "Anyone who drives Interstate 65 between Indianapolis and Chicago knows what a bottleneck it is. CN-INRD intermodal service will offer a more reliable, consistent and environmentally-friendly movement of goods that is less susceptible to costly weather and congestion delays."

The new Indianapolis terminal already is under construction and will be located at INRD's existing Senate Avenue Terminal, located in downtown Indianapolis, less than a mile from Lucas Oil Stadium. It will be complemented by a container yard and will start receiving empty containers on June 15. An on-site agricultural products containerized export loading facility will be in service at about the same time. The first import train will arrive in late June, the two railroads said.

CN estimates containerized import goods will flow in as little as 18-20 days from port loading in Shanghai and Qingdao, China, and in Busan, South Korea, to the INRD Senate Avenue Terminal, when using first port of call service.

Indianapolis-based Indiana Rail Road was named the 2012 Regional Railroad of the Year by Railway Age.