October 16, 2014: CSX along with federal, state and local officials, today celebrated the grand opening of the new Central Florida Intermodal Logistics Center (ILC) in Winter Haven. The facility, which began operations earlier this year, provides a centralized hub for transportation, logistics and distribution serving Orlando, Tampa and other regional Florida markets.
"The Central Florida ILC is the result of strategic collaboration between the City of Winter Haven, numerous state and local partners and CSX to create jobs and further strengthen Florida's transportation system," said Michael Ward, Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer at CSX. "CSX is proud to invest in this important development in our home state that will help to drive Florida's economy and position the state for continued growth in the future."
More than 200 people attended today's event including U.S. Congressmen Daniel Webster and Tom Rooney and officials from the City of Winter Haven, Polk County Board of County Commissioners, the Florida Legislature, and others.
"The Central Florida ILC is a game changer for Winter Haven not only because of the opening of the state-of-the-art terminal, but because of the economic development potential this project represents," said Winter Haven Mayor Nathaniel Birdsong. "Winter Haven is now a partner in the freight distribution industry, and is in the position to serve as an inland port for the global entry of goods and merchandise in Florida. We are proud to be the home of such an extensive project, which sets the stage for tremendous growth in the Polk County region."
The 318-acre intermodal terminal has capacity to process up to 300,000 containers a year and is designed for scalable expansion as freight volumes continue to grow. The terminal incorporates advanced environmentally-friendly technology including three high-powered electric cranes, solar panels and high mast exterior lighting to maximize energy efficiency.
"The value of Florida's transportation system is in the seamless connectivity between its many modes," said Clarence Gooden, Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at CSX. "This terminal is a model for how Florida's transportation modes work together collectively for the good of customers and the communities we serve."
The terminal is surrounded by 930 acres that are being developed in phases to build up to 7.9 million square feet of warehouse distribution centers and light industrial facilities. In July, Winter Haven Industrial Investors LLC purchased more than 500 acres of the adjoining property for phase one of this development, which is expected to bring thousands of jobs to the area and support the freight transportation needs of customers throughout the region.