Andrews to Murphy Rail Reactivation Study

North Carolina Department of Transportation Rail Division 

The a rail corridor from Andrews to Murphy, NC was once active, but freight service stopped in 1985 following many years of declining use and passenger service had stopped many years earlier. North Carolina DOT purchased the section of track to forestall its destruction, and then commissioned a study by Stantec to  assess the market potential, technical requirements, economic development opportunities and return on investment associated with reactivating that line for freight and tourism use. The following are quotes from the report.

“Detailed evaluation of the economic landscape was completed to ascertain the potential of the project to positively impact business and industrial development in the region. The economists utilized TREDIS,™ a computer model that relies on input-output economic analysis to describe the impacts from various transportation infrastructure or service improvements. This NCDOT-approved economic model was used to develop baseline economic development potential along the rail corridor. However, interviews and surveys were used as input variables in the TREDIS model. Our economists used the TREDIS model output to help quantify economic impacts from both freight shifts from truck service to rail service, as well as contingent impacts associated with new or expanded industries that rely on tourism rail.” p. 56

"Based on the economic modeling (using TREDIS software), there appears to be a good potential for economic development and redevelopment. Return on investment numbers indicate a benefit to cost ratio varying from less than 1:1 to nearly 2:1, for transportation related benefits. Annual wages on the order of $60 million stemming from nearly 1,900 jobs are forecasted after the full development potential attached to the A2M project would be realized (assumed to be 10 years after completion of the rail reactivation). This provides a ROI for employment/wage benefits of greater than 3:1. While some of these benefits are associated directly with rail operations, ancillary development prospects account for the majority of wage earnings and jobs.” p. 90


Project Report

TREDIS referenced: pp. 8, 19, 35, 56, 64-65, 68-70, 90

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