CSX today announced that the Commerce Park II – Rail Site in Hopkinsville, Kentucky, has been designated a Platinum CSX Select Site.
Select Sites are development-ready properties along the CSX network for which standard land use considerations and comprehensive due diligence items have been previously addressed. These properties meet the needs of a wide variety of manufacturers, significantly reducing the time required to construct facilities and ultimately bring products to market.
To receive Platinum CSX Select Site designation, a location must pass a rigorous evaluation on criteria that include infrastructure and utility availability; environmental reviews; appropriate zoning and entitlement; air quality permitting, rail serviceability; proximity to highways or interstates, and other attributes.
“The State of Kentucky’s commitment to improve roadway access to Commerce Park II is a game-changer for Hopkinsville,” said Christina Bottomley, vice president of Real Estate and Industrial Development at CSX. “With our investment in Casky Yard next to the Commerce Park site, CSX has long been interested in supporting a second planned rail-served industrial park for this community.”
CSX introduced the Select Site program in 2012 to better serve new and existing customers on its network and those of its short line partners. CSX works with Austin Consulting, a nationally known site-selection consulting firm, to screen candidate sites and assist communities with the application and certification process.
“We thank CSX and Austin Consulting for an exhaustive and worthwhile process to achieve this important designation,” said Carter Hendricks, director, South Western Kentucky Economic Development Council, the region’s three-county economic development organization.
“With the successful original Commerce Park on the other side of the railroad tracks, all the necessary utilities are in place to serve additional industrial facilities,” said Bottomley. “For more than a decade, industrial-grade roadway access has been the missing piece of the puzzle for Commerce Park II.”
Commerce Park II – Rail Site is a 150-acre property adjacent to the CSX mainline and part of a larger planned 1,000-plus acre industrial park in southwest Hopkinsville. For much of the past decade, the larger property was considered and marketed as a potential “mega site,” capable of accommodating an entire automotive manufacturing facility. Last year, local leadership opted to subdivide the large property to accommodate multiple industrial facilities. In October, Ascend Elements began construction of its largest electric vehicle battery recycling and engineered materials manufacturing facility at Commerce Park II. This investment led to support from Kentucky’s Transportation Cabinet to design and build an elevated roadway over the CSX mainline, connecting site to US-41, a five-lane highway.
“Having the CSX Select Site certification is another significant step forward for Commerce Park II and indicates the site is ready to help companies succeed. We encourage any company or industry to visit Commerce Park II and join our growing corporate family,” said Jerry Gilliam, Christian County Judge Executive.
Since its introduction in 2012 as a key component of CSX’s industrial development efforts, the Select Site Program has attracted dozens of manufacturers, with capital investments projected to reach $14 billion and realize nearly 11,000 new jobs.
“The City of Hopkinsville is excited to learn of the important Platinum CSX Select Site designation. With over 1,000 acres ready for development, Commerce Park II is an incredible rail site with unmatched logistics, workforce, and cost of doing business”, said Mayor James R. Knight.
The Commerce Park II – Rail Site is now the fourth site in Kentucky to have received the Platinum CSX Select Site designation. The property is one of 27 across CSX’s service territory to have met this rigorous site selection criteria.