Wednesday, January 27, 2010

National Gateway hub showcases environmental commitment

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National Gateway hub showcases environmental commitment | Railway Track & Structures

Cutting-edge environmental technologies and green design will make the Northwest Ohio Terminal Facility, a new freight transit hub under construction in North Baltimore, Ohio, one of the most environmentally friendly and technologically advanced freight terminals in the country.

Upon its completion in 2011, the facility will be the cornerstone of the National Gateway, an $842-million, multi-state public-private partnership that will create a double stack rail corridor between Mid-Atlantic ports and Midwestern markets.

"The Northwest Ohio Terminal Facility will set a new standard for the American railroad industry," said Guenter Bischof, managing director, Hans Kuenz GmbH, supplier of ultra-efficient cranes for the terminal. "Equipment choices and advanced technologies combine to increase this facility's productivity and reduce its environment impact."

Ultra-efficient cranes installed by Hans Kuenz GmbH will reduce energy consumption, improve efficiency and significantly reduce emissions. When transferring cargo containers between trains and trucks, the cranes will use electric motors to reduce emissions and will store the energy from crane, trolley and hoist decelerations.

Use of optical cargo scanners at inbound and outbound gates will improve terminal efficiency and minimize truck idle time to reduce emissions. Scanners at both ends of the Northwest Ohio Terminal Facility will feed container information into the operations system to automatically provide a work order to the trucker. The terminal will be lit with high-pressure sodium bulbs, which reduce energy consumption and light pollution. The yard will also utilize environmentally friendly NARSTCO Steel Ties, which are made from recycled steel and are themselves 100 percent recyclable.

"The Northwest Ohio Terminal Facility will exemplify a commitment to environmental stewardship and serve as a catalyst for future economic development opportunities in the surrounding regions," said Thomas R. Blaha, Executive Director of the local Wood County, Ohio, Economic Development Commission.

The National Gateway will support the movement of double-stacked intermodal containers on rail cars by raising bridges, increasing tunnel clearances and building new terminal facilities along existing rail routes. New terminals such as the Northwest Ohio Terminal Facility will expand intermodal services to connect more markets than ever before. When complete, the National Gateway will also improve service reliability and transit times by 24 to 48 hours between coastal ports.

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