Freight and goods movement is at the heart of the American economy. The nation’s $1.75 trillion transportation infrastructure makes it possible to move $6 trillion worth of freight each year. Transportation services make up a substantial portion of the economy—about 11% of the gross domestic product. Over 13 million people work directly or indirectly in transportation services
Despite the importance of freight and goods movement to the economy, investment in the system has lagged behind amounts needed to accommodate growth. To simply maintain the nation’s already crowded interstates and highways at their current level of service, about $34 billion more is needed per year. Even more money is needed to actually improve road conditions for motorists and truckers. Railroads will need to invest up to $175 billion over the next 20 years, principally through private financing sources. To accommodate the 827 million enplanements expected by 2008, airport capacity will need to be expanded by the equivalent of ten airports the size of Chicago’s O’Hare.
NARC is committed to exploring new ways to address regional and national goods movement issues by partnering with shippers, service providers, and other associations on new funding strategies.
Coalition for America’s Gateways and Trade Corridors
NARC is an active member of the Coalition for America’s Gateways and Trade Corridors, a group of over 30 organizations committed to reforming the freight and goods movement system of the United States. The coalition was formed to raise media and lawmaker awareness of freight issues. The Coalition was successful in securing over $4 billion in funding for freight-related projects. Meetings have been held with over 200 members of Congress. NARC serves on several committees of the Coalition, and encourages its members to become involved as well.
World Shipping Council and NARC
To help strengthen our goods movement system, NARC works with the World Shipping Council, a membership association of the 40 largest container ship operators in the world. The Council is concerned about the inland freight movement infrastructure in port communities. NARC hopes to cross-educate shippers and COGs/MPOs about the challenges in the industry and how freight infrastructure decisions are made. Educational materials, joint meetings, and conference calls are planned over the coming months and years to help both associations’ members better understand the challenges in maritime and inland freight movement.
American Association of Port Authorities to Connect MPOs/COGs with Ports
NARC is working with the American Association of Port Authorities (AAPA), a membership organization of the country’s deep draft public port authorities. Port authorities are seeking better ways to link maritime shipments to the surface transportation network. NARC and AAPA will be working together on educational projects and issues of mutual interest to help each association’s members meet the challenge of providing the infrastructure to move our nation’s freight.
FHWA Freight Peer to Peer Program
The Freight Peer to Peer (P2P) Program facilitates information sharing between public sector freight transportation professionals and provides technical assistance on an as-need basis. By providing an opportunity for public sector freight professionals to learn from their peers, the Freight P2P Program identifies and expands state and regional noteworthy practices in the freight transportation field and builds relationships, understanding, and cooperation among key stakeholders. FHWA has indicated their desire to reach more COGs and MPOs in their freight program. NARC urges its members to participate in this program to further their knowledge of freight issues. For more information, Click Here.
FHWA’s Talking Freight Webinar Series
The FHWA sponsors monthly webinars on freight operations issues as a convenient and no-cost way for transportation practitioners to broaden their freight knowledge base and develop new skills. Recorded sessions of previous seminars are available on the Talking Freight link provided below. If you missed a Talking Freight seminar, or want to review what you heard at a seminar, you can access recordings of each seminar by clicking on the links below. The recordings contain the visual and audio components from the seminars:http://www.fhwa.dot.gov/freightplanning/talking.htm
National Freight Policy- Ongoing draft from USDOT
National Freight Transportation Statistics and Maps - Click on your state below for the latest freight datasets from FHWA