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National Gateway add more than 50 new supporters

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The National Gateway, an unprecedented public-private partnership dedicated to improving the nation's freight capacity, has added nearly 50 new supporters since June 1, 2009, bringing the total number of coalition supporters to more than 140.  

The National Gateway is an
$842-million, multi-state public-private infrastructure initiative that will
create a more efficient freight rail route between Mid-Atlantic ports and
Midwestern markets. Planned improvements include raising bridges, increasing
tunnel clearances and building new terminals along existing rail corridors to
support the movement of double-stacked containers on rail cars.

The coalition has the
support of both public and private sector leaders, including governors and
other state and local officials across six states. Additionally, more than
three dozen members of Congress, three port authorities and a large number of
global shippers, ocean carriers, business organizations and environmental
groups have pledged their support for the National Gateway.

"Public-private
partnerships like the National Gateway will yield vast benefits to the economy,
the environment and the taxpayer," said Joel Haka, chief operating officer
and senior vice president of operations for CMA CGM (America) LLC. "This
project will create a better transportation network by creating cost-effective
transportation options allowing us to better serve our customers around the
globe while creating jobs and protecting the environment."

The National Gateway was
recently honored as "Competitiveness Project of the Year" by the North American
Strategic Infrastructure Leadership Forum, a leading infrastructure
identification and development group. In addition to improving America’s competitiveness
in global markets, the National Gateway will create jobs, reduce
transportation-related emissions and alleviate congestion on roads and
highways. According to Cambridge Systematic figures from 2009, every dollar of
public money invested in the National Gateway will yield $16 in public benefits
by significantly increasing freight capacity and reducing transit times between
coastal ports and major population centers by 24 to 48 hours.

To date, the project has
received $395 million in funding commitments from freight transportation
company CSX Corporation and its affiliates. States involved in the project are
expected to fund $189 million, with an additional $258 million requested from
the federal government.

The National Gateway
coalition combines the strengths of the private and public sectors to
efficiently and economically create safer, less congested roadways, improve the
environment and promote economic growth. Supporters have led efforts to deliver
an innovative program that will significantly benefit the millions of Americans
whose lives are impacted by freight transportation every day.

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