The Fairburn CSX Intermodal Center was built to create a high volume rail corridor for reliable intermodal service on the lines connecting Southern California ports with Atlanta and with the rest of the southeast region.
Project Type:Freight Terminal Project Mode:Highway Average Annual Daily Traffic:10,060 Length (mi):0.00
Project Flags:Intermodal Economic Distress:1.04 Population Density (ppl/sq mi):1825 Population Growth Rate (%):2.64
Employment Growth Rate (%):1.07 Market Size:1,442,317 Airport Travel Distance:20 Topography:5
Region:Southeast State:WA County:County
City:Fairburn Urban/Class Level:Rural Local Area:N/A
Impact Area:County Transportation System:N/A GIS Lat/Long:33.544160 / -84.611449
Initial Study Date:N/A Post Constr. Study Date:2007
Constr. Start Date:1997 Constr. End Date:1999
Project Year of Expenditure (YOE): 1998 Planned Cost (YOE $):N/A
Actual Cost (YOE $):156,000,000 Actual Cost (curr $):206,056,859
Intermodal Actual Cost (YOE $): 150,000,000Intermodal Actual Cost (curr $): 198,131,595
Highway Road Access Improvement Cost (YOE $): 6,000,000Highway Road Access Improvement Cost (curr $): 7,925,264
All Cargo Volume (Metric Tons): N/AContainer Volume (Metric Tons): N/AContainer Volume (TEU's): 420,000
NOTE: All pre/post dollar values are in 2013$
Select a region to display the conditions for that region:
NOTE: All impact dollar values are in 2013$
|Income (in $M's)||103.76||58.09||161.85|
|Output (in $M's)||310.05||173.56||483.61|
The $150 million CSX Intermodal Center in Fairburn Georgia, completed in 1999, has helped to promote the city as a center for the distribution and logistics industries. The Center, in Atlanta's suburbs, employs 110 workers. The facility has helped to attract a number of related logistics and warehousing operations to Fairburn, bringing additional jobs and investment. The total employment impact of the Intermodal Center is estimated at 1500 jobs. Road improvements in support of the project were financed by a Community Improvements District.
2.1 Location & Transportation Connections
Fairburn is in northwest Georgia in the Atlanta suburbs, about 20 miles (30 minutes) from downtown Atlanta. The city is on Interstate 85, which runs northeast to Richmond, VA and south to Montgomery, AL. Route 29 (Roosevelt Highway) connects Fairburn with Atlanta's I-285 beltway (seven miles north of Fairburn) and with Hartsfield International Airport (12 miles to the northeast). The Fairburn Terminal distributes cargo shipped on CSX's freight rail line connecting New Orleans and the Memphis Gateway to the west with the port of Savannah to the East.
2.2 Community Character & Project Context
Fairburn's slogan is "History Lives Here". The historic downtown district has a number of National Register of Historic Places buildings that bear witness to its growth and development as a railroad town, including freight and passenger depots.
Between 1990 and 2008, the number of jobs in Fairburn grew from 2750 to 6552, registering an average annual growth rate of nearly 5%, compared with population growth averaged 5.8% a year from 1990 to 2009. During this period, Fairburn's population growth rate was two and a half times the state average rate. Currently, Fairburn has just over 11,000 residents. With over 6,500 jobs, it is a ?job rich? city,
Before the CSX terminal was located in Fairburn, it was principally a manufacturing center. Since the intermodal facility opened, Fairburn has lost half of its manufacturing establishments. Transportation and warehousing firms have, however, increased by 67%. Wholesale and retail enterprises have grown by 44% and 50% respectively. Financial services firms have doubled and the number of restaurants has tripled.
CSX's Fairburn Intermodal Center opened in 1999. The $150,000,000 (1998 $'s) facility occupied 148 acres and employed 30 workers. During its initial years of operations, the facility handled 145,000 intermodal lifts a years. The facility was expanded in 2007, adding 500 acres and now handles 200,000 intermodal lifts a year, employing 110 workers. There are six tracks to load and unload containers onto trucks and three tracks to store inbound trains. The facility operates around the clock, serving 600 to 700 trucks a day.
The Fairburn Facility was built to create a high volume rail corridor for reliable intermodal service on the lines connecting Southern California ports with Atlanta and with the rest of the southeast region. The ?piggyback? facility unloads containers of goods imported from Asia via California ports and reloads them onto trucks for delivery to businesses within a 250-mile radius of Fairburn.
The facility also provides export service for local businesses, via Southern California ports and Savannah. In order to provide coast-to-coast service from Los Angles ports, CSX (who serves locations east of the Mississippi River) has partnered with Union Pacific's Interline Service (connecting through New Orleans) and with BNSF (connecting via the Memphis Gateway). CSX's has another Atlanta Intermodal Center in Hulsey that provides service from the Pacific Northwest and Florida ports.
When it opened, the Fairburn Yard served about 400 to 500 trucks a day. An at-grade crossing for CSX rail cars was causing traffic delays of 15 minutes or more. To absorb the additional traffic generated by spur lines from the facility, a bridge over the CSX tracks on Oakley Industrial Boulevard was built. Design began in 2000 and the bridge was completed in 2006. The total project cost was $6 million (2003 $). GA DOT paid $4.5 million. The remainder was paid by Fulton County and the abutting industries, who donated the right of way for the bridge.
4.1 Transportation Impacts
The Fairburn Intermodal Center has created a high volume rail corridor for reliable intermodal service on the lines connecting Southern California ports with Atlanta and with the rest of the southeast region. This has removed truck traffic from interstate highways, improving safety, reducing congestion, and defraying maintenance costs. Based on the current annual number of intermodal lifts, the Fairburn GA facility has taken 200,000 trucks a year off interstate highways.
The Oakley Industrial Boulevard Bridge project undertaken to relieve congestion due to an at-grade CSX rail crossing in the corridor, has reduced the impacts of truck and rail traffic on local residents and has facilitated the speed and efficiency of shipping by rail vs. truck.
4.2 Demographic, Economic & Land Use Impacts
The Fairburn Intermodal Center has expanded its employment from 30 staff, when it first opened in 1999, to 110 staff today. The facility has helped to attract a number of additional warehousing, distribution, and logistics firms who want to be near the facility to minimize drayage costs. These include purpose-built distribution centers for Smuckers, Clorox, Kellogg, and Unilever/Best Foods.
Exel Logistics has a large facility in Fairburn where they manage supply chains for several multi-national companies. Other developers have built a number of speculative warehousing buildings for lease. And more logistics development is planned. First Industrial Realty Trust, a Chicago firm, has begun preliminary discussions with CSX to develop a 150 acre intermodal park here, which will be the first of its kind in Fairburn. It will be modeled on Centerpoint's BNSF Logistics Park Chicago, a $1 billion project that covers 2,500 acres with capacity for up to 12 million square feet of industrial logistics space.
Although CSX generates a high volume of truck traffic, the visual impact of the facility has been mitigated by careful design. The facility is set back off the road, with a landscaped entrance with a brick sign and decorative lamp posts. It is visually surrounded by a thick grove of trees that obscure the rail and truck activity that takes place on site. CSX, as a public utility, is tax exempt, but investment by related industries has increased Fairburn's property tax base significantly.
The CSX intermodal yard and the four intermodal yards have a combined total of more than 2 million square feet and employ a total of around 1100 staff (including CSX's 110 workforce). These facilities have attracted more residents and businesses to Fairburn, resulting in additional indirect and induced employment. The total jobs due to the Intermodal facility are estimated at around 1500.
CSX located in Fairburn because the railroad needed a second intermodal yard in metro Atlanta to augment their existing intermodal center in Hulsey, which was at capacity and had no room to expand on site. Fairburn was selected due to its location within the Atlanta metropolitan area, its low land prices, and the availability of a suitable labor force within commuting distance.
The Oakley Industrial Bridge was planned and built after CSX selected the Fairburn site so the project was not a factor in their decision to locate in the area. Rather, the bridge project was undertaken to mitigate the impacts of additional road congestion caused by the facility.
The Oakley Industrial Bridge was partly financed and promoted by the South Fulton County Community Improvement District (CID). The CID covers 6,500 acres of commercial and industrial property in the I-85 and Oakley Industrial Boulevard corridors within Fairburn, Union City, and Palmetto, as well as some unincorporated sections of Fulton County. Businesses within the CID pay an additional 0.3% property tax. The proceeds of this tax are used exclusively for infrastructure projects to benefit businesses within the District.
The South Fulton County CID tax raises about $200,000 per annum, which is used for ?pump priming? design and engineering studies of infrastructure projects of direct benefit to the businesses within the Improvement District. When construction money becomes available from the state or local jurisdictions, the CID has projects ready to go. The CID was organized and promoted by a single citizen -- Sandra Hardy, a resident of the neighborhood that abuts the facility.
A number of other transportation projects within the corridor have been undertaken by the South Fulton CID. These projects probably would have been undertaken eventually, but it would have taken many years. The CID put these projects on the state agenda and made them priorities for state and federal funding.
?CGA Center Wins over Skeptical Neighbors?, Dec. 12. 2006,www.heraldonline.com
?CSX Rail Hub Nears Opening in Fulton County, GA)? Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News
?First Intermodal Business Park would Boost Logistics?. Atlanta Business Chronicle, July 24, 2009.
BNSF, CSX in Intermodal Agreement, October 13, 2006,www.trainorders.com June 3, 1999.
OrganizationCity of Fairburn, GA CSX Fairburn Intermodal Center CSX Railroad Fairburn Economic Development Authority Fulton County Engineering Department South Futon County Community Improvement District