Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Panhandle Rail Line: A Crown Jewel Resource

Rail infrastructure and competitive rail access are key components in economic development. 

As the leadership of the State of Ohio explores what to do, long-term, with the state-owned Panhandle Rail Line, we in Licking County watch with much concern.  Retaining a competive rail line with much-needed capital improvements while also retaining competitive access rights gained with state ownership is the biggest balancing act.

Mark Sweeney of McCallum Sweeney was quoted a few years back at an International Economic Development Council conference talking about rail.  His thinking gives me the validation for why economic development-minded folks need to retain competitive, open access along the Panhandle.  He said, “If you have rail, you have a scarce resource. If you have dual rail service sites, you have a crown jewel resource.”

Mark's right.  That's why we continue to advocate to retain competitive, open access.

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