Railroad Transport to Inland Terminal to Save 6 Million Truck Miles Per Year

A press release issued by Gov. Nathan Deal’s office today announced the partnership between Kia Motors and Cordele Intermodal Services to move auto parts from Savannah to Kia’s manufacturing plant in West Point. Approximately 30,000 containers will travel from the Port of Savannah via railroad to the inland terminal located in Cordele. The containers will then be transported by motor carrier to West Point. The plan expects to save over 6 million truck miles every year.

I am proud that these types of plans are being formulated to reduce the burden on I-16 and other highways and roads leading from the Port of Savannah.

Gov. Deal:

“Kia has been a remarkably successful economic driver for West Point and Georgia’s inland terminals provide a new efficient way for companies to transport goods throughout the state. This partnership and use of the inland port will reduce congestion on our highways and lower transportation costs, using new infrastructure to benefit both companies and the West Point area. The inland rail yards enable Georgia companies to grow to meet the demands of the Southeastern states, while bolstering economic development across the state.”

Georgia Ports Authority Executive Director Griff Lynch:

“Cargo can be loaded onto trains, moving hundreds of containers in a single trip, staged at an intermodal yard, then trucked for much shorter distances. This model drives out waste and redundancy in the supply chain, delivering greater efficiency for customers and environmental benefits through reduced diesel consumption.”

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CharlieJack Fitzchefdavid Recent comment authors
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Why not leave them on the train and send them to La Grange and then to West Point? Wouldn’t that save even more truck miles?

Jack Fitz
Jack Fitz

So it looks there is a GDOT owned railroad that runs from Vidalia over to Cordele. Makes sense that GDOT would want to use that as a way to alleviate road congestion heading up I-16 and into the Macon bottleneck. http://www.dot.ga.gov/InvestSmart/rail/Documents/Freight/GeorgiaRailroadMap-2013-14.pdf As for why they’d opt for truck v. rail from there, it’s probably costly from a time/energy standpoint to run rail northbound through the Pine Mountain range over to LaGrange. Might be why they’d just off-load there and truck it. Since its pretty flat from Savannah to Vidalia to Cordele. I have no idea, just my two cents.


Cordele’s inland port was the pilot to see if the concept worked. It’s been hugely successful. The 2nd port in Murray County is underway. There are six zones that the Port/GDOT/railroads have all identified. The goal is to have at least one inland port in each zone. Maybe even more than one. For them to work/be viable, there has to be the possibility of a “straight shot” between the port and the inland port via rail. One of the biggest current obstacles is the existing rail network, which is mostly single-tracked, rife with yards/junctions (which become bottlenecks in moving traffic… Read more »