Pennsylvania Cargo Transportation

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Pennsylvania Cargo Transportation
Pennsylvania maintains the nation’s fifth-largest state-owned roadway network with over 41,000 linear miles of roadway, the fourth-highest number of interstate miles, and has the third largest number of bridges with approximately 25,000 state-owned bridges. In 2011, Pennsylvania ranked first among states in the number of railroads (60); fifth in railroad mileage (5,095 miles of truck); and seventh and tenth in tons and carloads respectively that originate and terminate within the state. Pennsylvania is also the only state that has all three types of ports: deep water, inland waterway, and Great Lakes. Inland waterways, including the Ohio River system, connect to ports on the Gulf and provide an efficient, cost-effective means of transporting goods to domestic and international markets. Pennsylvania is home to two of the top 100 cargo airports in the U.S. in terms of total tonnage in 2013: Philadelphia (#18) and Pittsburgh (#56). Combined, these modal assets create a multimodal freight transportation system that carries 7.5 percent of the goods and materials produced, used, or exported in the nation. 

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In 2011, Pennsylvania’s multimodal freight transportation system carried approximately $1.6 trillion (1.1 billion tons) of goods into, within, out of, and through the state, and by 2040, the same system is projected to carry over $3.7 trillion (1.9 billion tons). Pennsylvania is truly the Keystone State for freight – linking its multimodal freight transportation system to consumers across the state, across the country, and throughout the world is critical, both for bringing materials and components to companies that create the final product and for transporting finished goods. 

Freight transportation represents a key competitiveness factor for Pennsylvania’s businesses. To ensure the Pennsylvania multimodal freight transportation system supports and enhances efficient goods movement and sustainable economic growth, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) in coordination with the state’s 24 planning partners and numerous statewide freight stakeholders led the development of Pennsylvania’s first ever multimodal statewide freight plan. The 

Comprehensive Freight Movement Plan (CFMP) is intended to: 

 - Identify strategies, policies, and locations to improve freight access, interconnectivity, and mobility on Pennsylvania’s multimodal freight transportation system, with the goal of improving its competitive position by attracting, retaining, and expanding industries and jobs; and 
 - Help guide the state’s investment decisions regarding the infrastructure that supports freight movements. 

The CFMP was developed in parallel with the 2040 Long Range Transportation Plan (PA on Track). 

The planning process emphasized the early, active, and ongoing engagement with stakeholders, Metropolitan Planning Organizations, Rural Planning Organizations, PennDOT District 

Offices and modal bureaus, other state agencies and departments, and PennDOT leadership to: 

 - Define the vision, goals, objectives, and performance measures; 
 - Identify and evaluate current and future conditions of Pennsylvania’s multimodal freight transportation system; 
 - Examine current and future trends and the issues influencing how businesses move their products today and potential changes due to technology advancements, supply chain adjustments, commodity flows, new regulations, and population increases; 
 - Identify recommendations, strategies, focus areas, project areas and projects to preserve, maintain, and connect Pennsylvania’s multimodal freight transportation system, to ensure it remains an asset to citizens and businesses and supports the state’s economic competitiveness; and 
 - Develop a project prioritization process, illustrative freight project list, strategies, and policies to support and inform the decision-making process. 

PA On Track and the Comprehensive Freight Movement Plan are centered on the following four goal areas that support the achievement of Pennsylvania’s transportation vision and guide PennDOT and the planning partners in addressing transportation priorities: 

 - System preservation - Preserve transportation assets using sound asset management practices within the limitations of available resources; 
 - Safety - Improve statewide safety for all modes and all users; 
 - Personal and freight mobility - Expand and improve system mobility and integrate modal connections; and 
 - Stewardship - Increase efficiency through modernization of assets and streamlining of processes. 

The CFMP meets the federal requirements of the Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century Act (MAP-21) and designed to address national, state, regional, and local freight priorities. The CFMP addresses the following national freight goals identified in MAP-21: 

 - Improve the contribution of the multimodal freight transportation system to economic efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness; 
  - Reduce congestion on the multimodal freight transportation system; 
 - Improve the safety, security, and resilience of the multimodal freight transportation system; 
  - Improve the state of good repair of the multimodal freight transportation system; 
 - Use advanced technology, performance management, innovation, competition, and accountability in operating and maintaining the multimodal freight transportation system; and 
 - Reduce adverse environmental and community impacts of the multimodal freight transportation system. 

MAP-21 national performance and freight goals are addressed through one or more of the four CFMP goals. These include:
  • Economic competitiveness; 
  • Reducing congestion; 
  • Increasing productivity and economic efficiency; 
  • Improving safety, security, and resilience; 
  • State of good repair; 
  • Use of advanced technology; 
  • Making use of performance management, innovation, competition, and accountability; and 
  • Enhancing the environment. 
Meeting these goals that preserve, maintain, modernize, and connect the freight transportation system require public and private investments over the next 25 years. While proposals have been put forth to strengthen federal transportation funding, the most likely scenario is that future federal transportation funding for Pennsylvania will remain flat. However in 2013, Pennsylvania’s General Assembly provided PennDOT dedicated and stable long-term funding through Act 89. Act 89 is Pennsylvania’s first major transportation funding legislation in over 15 years and generates an additional $2.3 billion annually by Fiscal Year 2017-18 to address transportation system needs.

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Pennsylvania’s public and private sector freight facilities and carriers such as air cargo facilities, trucking companies, ports, and railroads employ thousands of Pennsylvanians and have a significant impact on the state’s economy. Each mode benefits the state’s economy by generating jobs and income, revenue from output (sales), and from tax revenues. Jobs are generated through three different mechanisms: 
 Direct Jobs – Jobs such as truck drivers, rail and air cargo employees, and longshoreman that are directly related to freight activities; 
 Indirect jobs – Local jobs created through direct expenditures of the operators and manufacturers dependent on the freight activities; and 
 Induced Jobs – Local jobs created through expenditures by direct employees. 3.5.1 

In 2012, Pennsylvania’s trucking industry employed approximately 110,000 truck drivers at an average wage of $39,000 per year. Those jobs are distributed among heavy duty vehicles (71,980 jobs) and delivery trucks (31,130 jobs).