CSX saw an opportunity to increase the speed to market and reduce up-front development risk for companies seeking industrial property for manufacturing operations. As a result, CSX partnered with Austin Consulting and introduced the CSX Select Site program, which identifies the optimal rail-served sites for accommodating industrial development and expansion.
CSX Select Sites are locations for manufacturing projects along the CSX network that can progress rapidly because standard land use issues have been addressed, and the site is ready for development following a comprehensive due diligence process.
CSX Transportation engaged Austin Consulting to develop and administer the CSX Select Site program and website. Using the same principals applied in evaluating sites for corporate clients, Austin worked with CSX to implement a stringent set of certification requirements.
CSX Select Site certification criteria include:
- Site size
- Access to rail services
- Proximity to highways
- Workforce availability
- Utilities – natural gas, electricity, water and wastewater
- Environmental and geotechnical standards
To date, Austin has certified 23 CSX Select Sites, gaining exposure to the unique considerations of certifying rail-served properties. This has given Austin an inside look at the operational challenges that railroads face and the unique competitive advantages that rail transportation can bring to various industries, especially in light of volatile fuel and energy costs. During the certification process, Austin assists communities in identifying and preparing the best industrial sites to compete for new investments and job creation.
Since the rollout of this program, CSX has reported an increased interest and activity in these properties. CSX Select Sites have received greater attention and priority from regional and state economic development staff.
Austin Services Provided: Site Certification, Due Diligence, Site Design, Community Assessment and Education
Site Sizes: 100-1,000 acres
CSX 23-State Service Area