Inland Port Assets
Will County’s assets as an Inland Port are considerable. Historically, Will County has thrived as a result of a well-developed transportation system of roads, rails and rivers and its location in relation to Chicago. More recently, assets have expanded to include several modern intermodal facilities, a large network of warehousing and distribution operations, a logistics-focused workforce and the availability of industrially-zoned land. Significant infrastructure improvements planned for Will County highlight the importance of Will County’s Inland Port.
CenterPoint Intermodal Center
Modern intermodal facilities currently exist in Will County for the transfer of containerized goods from rail to truck. Located in southwest Will County, these facilities are part of expansive industrial/logistics park development, The Union Pacific Joliet Intermodal Terminal and BNSF Logistics Park Chicago. Each are served by a Class I railroad and offer premier access to I-55 and I-80. Both were developed by CenterPoint Properties and represent a significant private investment in the growth and development of Will County. Importantly, these facilities have established Will County as an important link in global supply chains.
Elion Logistics Park 55 (ELP 55)
is a master-planned 30+ million-square-foot rail-served, mixed-use logistics park located in the City of Wilmington, Will County. Developed and operated by Elion Partners, the project consists of 2,500 acres which include industrial distribution buildings ranging from 800,000 to 2 million square feet, with 6 million square feet currently built. ELP 55 is bordered by I-55 and the Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF) mainline, providing unparalleled advantages to corporate occupiers through its superior location and amenities. Key amenities include a full-service travel plaza with service center, first responders (fire and police) station, and redundant power services. The project has been classified as an Enterprise Zone, and is a TIF district. An FTZ designation is planned. The project has immediate access to I-55 from Lorenzo Road, and is less than 10 miles from the I-55/I-80 interconnect. IDOT has prioritized funding for the reconstruction of the I-55/Lorenzo Road interchange in its FY 2017-2021 highway improvement program.
Will County’s Inland Port is an integral and growing part of Chicago’s national rail hub. There are six Class I Railroads with operations in Will County: BNSF, UP, CSX, CN, NS and IC. Two modern intermodal facilities have been constructed in southwest Will County since 2002 to handle the transfer of both domestic and international containers from two of the busiest ports in the country, the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. In total TEUs (one 20-foot cargo container or its equivalent), Will County ranks 4th in the nation with over 3 million TEUs in 2013.
The number of rail served sites in Will County will increase with development of the ELP55 along the BNSF rail line in Wilmington.
In late 2008, the purchase of the EJ & E by the CN was approved by the national Surface Transportation Board. This circumferential line passes through multiple Will County communities. Traffic volumes on this and other rail lines in Will County are expected to grow steadily in the coming decades as rail transportation benefits from additional investment in infrastructure, its competitiveness on fuel efficiency and a favorable policy environment.
National Rail Network