A faster, more cost-effective way to move cargo is coming to the Port of Baltimore,on Tuesday. Maryland will receive $125 million as part of the federal INFRA (Infrastructure For Rebuilding America) Grant Program. The funding will allow the state, in partnership with CSX, to double-stack shipping containers in the Howard Street Tunnel in order to break the rail bottleneck before the Helen Delich Bentley Port of Baltimore.
Currently, the majority of cargo handled at the Port of Baltimore is transported by truck because the Howard Street Tunnel is not configured to accommodate trains that are double-stacked with containers, said Richard Sher, director of communications at the Port of Baltimore.
The tunnel’s double-stack capacity will provide companies more direct routes for cargo and a more cost-effective way to transport freight by rail than by truck.
“Other East Coast ports that we compete with for containers do have double stack capabilities,” said Sher. “Governor Hogan understands how important this project is. He’s pushed to get this done since he took office.”
“For years, our administration has pursued funding for this critical project, and after a number of roadblocks, we are finally able to move forward on reconstruction,” said Governor Hogan. “This grant will help us to break a coast-wide bottleneck, further bolstering our economic success at the Port of Baltimore and across the state. I want to thank the U.S. Department of Transportation, CSX, and our partners at the Port for making this initiative a reality.”
Having double stacked container capabilities will increase the Port of Baltimore’s annual container throughput by about 100,000. It will also be a significant job generator by adding 7,000 construction jobs and about 7,400 jobs that will be created because of the increased container business.