-After a competitive solicitation for proposals to market and operate the state-owned Global Trans Park (GTP) railroad line in Lenoir County, the N.C. Department of Transportation has selected the Gulf & Ohio Railways, Inc
. The NCDOT Board of Transportation approved the new GTP Lease & Operating Agreement at its Nov. 5, 2015 meeting. Under the terms of the agreement, G&O will operate, maintain and market freight service on the GTP line.
Located just west of Kinston, the rail line connects to the North Carolina Railroad on its south end and extends 5.7 miles north to the GTP. The railroad is strategically located to provide service to the GTP, the Morehead City State Port and eastern North Carolina. NCDOT and G&O believe the GTP line has significant business development opportunities. "We are excited about having an operator serving the GTP rail spur," said NCDOT Rail Director Paul Worley. "This will give us an advantage as we look to support economic development and job creation at the GTP and along the rail line."
NCDOT owns the GTP rail corridor, which was built in 2011. NCDOT and G&O will work closely with the Lenoir County Board of Commissioners and the Lenoir County Economic Development Commission to build a customer base along the rail line.
"We look forward to exploring the opportunities that we see this rail line offering," said Peter V. Claussen, President of G&O. "It is truly a unique piece of property and presents a lot of growth potential."
Headquartered in Knoxville, Tennessee, G&O is a short-line railroad holding company. The company currently operates four other short-line railroads in the U.S., including two in North Carolina. All of its short-line railroads provide freight service. G&O has approximately 90 employees and is managed by a senior team that has extensive experience in the industry.