Industries thrive in Greater Hazleton’s Humboldt Industrial Park because of the area’s competitive operating costs and strategic location near the crossroads of Interstates 80 and 81. Another added benefit is immediate access to the quality railroad system that runs directly through several sections of the 3,000-acre park.
When Reading Blue Mountain & Northern Railroad (RBMN) took over rail service in CAN DO’s Humboldt Industrial Park on January 1, companies in Greater Hazleton immediately saw the benefits they would receive from the rail carrier’s personalized service and quality access to rail transportation for their goods and services.
Reading Blue Mountain & Northern is the largest privately owned railroad company in Pennsylvania and is the only railroad to be named Regional Railroad of the Year three times by Railway Age Magazine. The railroad is also a three time winner of the American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association’s Marketing Award for business development, most recently in 2016. RBMN provides access to the entire North American Rail System with direct connections to both Norfolk Southern and Canadian Pacific Railroads. The short line rail carrier runs a scheduled service that provides additional rail switches when business needs warrant them. RBMN also offers railcar storage and personalized service for each business customer. Each customer has their own local account representative and a plan that guarantees them their own service window and up to six-days-a-week service that meets their needs.
More than 15 industries in the Humboldt Industrial Park are dependent on rail service from Reading Blue Mountain and Northern Railroad across the park’s 7.5 miles of track. The number of rail cars that move through Humboldt, the region’s largest rail-served industrial park, each year recently surpassed 4,600.
According to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation, Pennsylvania ranks first in the country in the number of operating railroads with 63 and near the top in total track mileage with more than 5,600 miles. After just three months of service, Humboldt Industrial Park companies are already seeing how personalized service from Reading Blue Mountain & Northern Railroad improves their operations.
Tracy Karchner of Karchner Logistics said, “Rail service within the industrial parks is a critical component in the delivery of raw materials and finished goods for the occupants within the parks. Our company has benefited by enabling our customers to have their materials shipped directly to our warehouses, thus reducing their transportation costs. Different items ship better by rail and it becomes a more efficient process for all parties involved. CAN DO’s efforts in promoting the availability of rail service within their parks has resulted in various companies deciding to locate here, as opposed to elsewhere.”
CAN DO President Kevin O’Donnell said, “Rail service is critical to many industries. CAN DO’s parks wouldn’t have the number of employers that they do without the immediate access to rail transportation. Having rail-served sites has proven to be an attractive and enticing commodity for companies that choose to locate here.”
Humboldt Industrial Park has various rail-access properties available. These include a 46-acre site along Forest Road in Humboldt East that is ideal for a 470,000 square-foot facility, as well as a 33-acre property along Commerce Drive in Humboldt East that is near pad-ready and has approvals for a 455,000 square-foot facility.