Network Appalachia: Freight, Trade, and Economic Development

Author(s): Dan Hodge and Ann Furbush
Author Organization(s): Cambridge Econometrics

This research report, commissioned by the Appalachian Regional Commission’s Network Appalachia multimodal transportation advisory group, provides an assessment of the freight network in Appalachia and the global context that surrounds it. This report is an update of the 2010 Network Appalachia: Access to Global Opportunity report and maps freight network infrastructure in the Region, profiles key freight logistics facilities, and describes global context and trends. In addition, this study estimates the tonnage and value of freight flows and commodity shipments to, from and within Appalachia, and provides an assessment of freight employment in the Region and thus the economic development contribution of freight and trade sectors in Appalachia.

Network Appalachia is an Appalachian Regional Commission strategic effort to open up the Appalachian Region and successfully link the businesses, communities, and people of the Region to local, national, and global markets and destinations. Network Appalachia capitalizes on the investment in the 3,090­-mile Appalachian Development Highway System (ADHS) by integrating the ADHS with the Region’s other freight transportation modes to establish a strategic network of coordinated and interconnected highway, rail, air, and inland waterway corridors. To benefit the Region’s cities as well as its smaller communities and rural areas, Network Appalachia focuses attention on a regionwide system of intermodal connectors to strengthen Appalachia’s access to opportunity.