Borderlands is a weekly rundown of developments in the world of United States-Mexico cross-border trucking and trade. This week: BNSF Railway rethinks its plan to build a Texas logistics center after community opposition; Paschall Truck Lines adds a new cross-border terminal; Niagara Bottling will build a logistics center in Central Texas; and the Commerce Department honors three Texas-based export businesses.
BNSF Railway rethinks plan to build Texas logistics center after community opposition
BNSF Railway is pulling back from plans to develop a 950-acre logistics center in North Texas after weeks of community opposition.
The railroad announced Wednesday that it was withdrawing an application to rezone and annex property it owns in Gunter, Texas, about 50 miles north of Dallas.
“BNSF has been working very closely with the city of Gunter and listening to feedback from the community as we plan for the development of a new logistics center,” BNSF officials said in a statement to several media outlets.
“BNSF has decided to take time to further consider how we will orient and construct this facility. We are withdrawing our applications to rezone and annex our property in the city. We appreciate the city of Gunter for their continued efforts to work with our company, and look forward to further developing this site in a way that is mutually beneficial to the community and our customers.”
Officials for BNSF did not immediately respond to a request for comment from FreightWaves.
The proposed BNSF logistics center was first presented to the community in June and aimed to provide intermodal services for light industrial manufacturing and agricultural goods through the Lone Star State.
BNSF officials said the Gunter location was picked based on its accessibility to the railroad’s intermodal line running through the Dallas-Fort Worth area. The railroad currently has three logistics centers in Texas, including Dallas, along with facilities in the towns of Sweetwater and Cleveland, according to its website.
“Logistics centers offer direct-rail service in multi-customer, multi-commodity business parks. … These facilities are designed to serve both manifest mixed freight and unit train single commodity customers,” BNSF said.
Jeanelle Davis, BNSF’s executive director of public affairs, said the logistics center would bring jobs and economic growth to the area during a meeting with Gunter community members on June 27.
In recent weeks, dozens of residents from Gunter voiced their concerns about the logistics center during several public meetings held in the rural town of about 2,250 people. Dozens of residents spoke in opposition of the proposed logistics center.
Some residents said they don’t want to be living near train yards, while others feared the impact increased heavy industries would have on local roads.
“I didn’t pay that much tax for the last eight years to be next to a train yard,” Gunter resident Jennifer Jolly said, according to KTEN.
Paschall Truck Lines adds new cross-border terminal
Paschall Truck Lines and its parent company Interstate Personnel Services Inc. recently completed the purchase of a truck terminal in Laredo, Texas.
The 6,000-square-foot terminal has parking for more than 200 trailers and will house 12 support staff employees. Murray, Kentucky-based Paschall Truck Lines has 1,100 trucks and drivers, as well as 4,000 trailers.
Paschall Truck Lines, which has been in Laredo for more than 30 years, purchased the new terminal to accommodate increased trade between the U.S. and Mexico and to provide more amenities to its truck drivers.
“We are proud to continue our long and rich history of servicing cross-border transportation to and from Mexico,” Dave Gibbs, president and CEO of Paschall Truck Lines, said in a statement. “The investment in this modern C-TPAT (Customs-Trade Partnership Against Terrorism) compliant facility will provide the company a maintenance facility, additional secure parking for our customer loads near the border as well as provide additional amenities for our drivers and employees.”
More than 10% of Paschall’s truckload business is cross-border freight between the U.S. and Mexico, officials said.
Interstate Personnel Services’ operating entities include Paschall Truck Lines, Paschall Trailer Leasing, Paschall Logistics, IPS Leasing and Transport Distribution Co., offering one-way, dedicated, regional, long-haul, logistics and equipment leasing services in the U.S. and Mexico.
Niagara Bottling to build logistics center in Central Texas
Beverage manufacturer Niagara Bottling announced it will build a $48 million logistics facility in Temple, Texas.
The logistics center will create 14 jobs and help the company manage the distribution of new beverage products and serve customers throughout the Central Texas region, officials said.
“The highly competitive and attractive location, transportation infrastructure and workforce have helped fuel an important partnership between Niagara and the community,” Brian Hess, executive vice president, said in a news release.
Commerce Department honors 3 Texas export businesses
Marisa Lago, the undersecretary of commerce for international trade, recently presented Export Achievement Awards to three minority-owned businesses in San Antonio as part of the International Trade Administration’s (ITA) global diversity export initiative.
The recipients are:
— J. Canavati & Co. LLC, a Hispanic-owned international trade and consulting firm.
— Knight Aerospace, a Hispanic- and women-owned business that exports products to more than 37 countries.
— Better Emissions, a Hispanic-owned manufacturer of clean fuel enhancement technology, serving the agribusiness, automotive, construction, energy and transportation sectors.
The ITA is part of the U.S. Department of Commerce, operating in more than 100 locations across the country and 80 markets worldwide to promote trade and investment.
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