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Rail yards bring new jobs
Workers continue to lay railroad track within the Alamo Junction Rail Park located near Elmendorf.
Hundreds of new jobs could be coming down the line for South Texas as two rail-serviced industrial parks are under construction on both sides of the Bexar-Wilson county line in the wake of the increased petrochemical exploration in the Eagle Ford shale.
Alamo Junction Rail Park
A ribbon-cutting event has been scheduled for April 2, one day after the official opening of the Alamo Junction Rail Park located just outside the Elmendorf city limits. The 400-acre master-planned facility is being constructed off Old Corpus Christi Road near Richter Road.
National Property Holdings, REOC San Antonio, and Houston-based Rail Logix have joined forces to build the park, which will include two interchange tracks entering the park. Plans also include multiple 9,000-plus linear feet of loop tracks to accommodate unit trains of more than 100 cars each, 22,000-plus feet of manifest interchange tracks, and additional storage tracks. This is according to Ryan T. Lovell, director of real estate and development for Houston-based National Property Holdings.
John Greg Turcotte, senior vice president of REOC San Antonio, said Alamo Junction is dual-serviced by both the Burlington Northern and Santa Fe Railway and Union Pacific Railroad. In its first phase, the park will have a capacity of more than 200 rail cars, which one of the two railroad giants will drop off at the site before dedicated Rail Logix locomotives drop them off at locations throughout the Alamo Junction complex.
Lovell said sites within the park will be available for both sale and lease. Companies that already have committed to locating in Alamo Junction include Arrow Material Services of Sewickley, Penn., and RLI Logistics of San Antonio. Both have leased transload sites that currently are under construction. A 12-acre site has been sold to Redmond, Wash.,-based chemical distribution company Univar USA, with construction of their facility slated for completion by the end of the year.
“Alamo Junction Rail Park is ideally positioned for oilfield service/supply companies transporting bulk liquids, frac sand, pipe, etc., with easy access via I-37, Loop 1604, and U.S. 181, ” Lovell said.
Mission Rail Park
Just 2 miles down the tracks from Alamo Junction, Mission Rail Park also is under construction. The 1,003-acre site is located near the intersection of Gillett Road and Old Corpus Christi Road, where it straddles the Bexar-Wilson county line just outside Saspamco. Terry Warth, vice president of industrial properties for CBRE -- the park’s developer -- said Mission Rail Park was made possible through a partnership with Union Pacific -- which will service the park -- that resulted in the extension of 1-1/2 miles of rail from the line’s previous terminus at Brenntag on Loop 1604. The site is being managed by Frontier Logistics.
The park’s tentative layout will include 13 lots, but this format is adjustable, depending upon clients’ lease or purchase needs. Jeff Dolen, project manager for Mission Rail Park LLC, said trains will enter the park via a single railway that enters the site and splits into five tracks, each measuring approximately 6,000 linear feet, with additional tracks that will total roughly 10 miles in various stages of development.
Like Alamo Junction, rail cars will be brought into the site and dropped at a central location, where dedicated locomotives will ferry them to their individual end users, in a process known as “indexing,” Dolen said.
Warth said that two companies already are receiving shipments of frac sand and pipes in the park, with the first sand shipment entering the park March 12. He was not at liberty to divulge the names of these firms, but described one as “one of the major operators in the Eagle Ford.”
According to Mission Rail Park’s website, Frac Resources is a co-developer of the park and its first tenant. The firm ships frac sand for use in area oil-field operations. Current projections are that Frac Resources will unload approximately 40,000 tons of frac sand per year at the complex.
But the ongoing activities involving oil and natural gas exploration and production within the Eagle Ford shale formation are only the beginning, Warth said. Like Alamo Junction, Mission Rail Park’s strategic location, open layout, and topography offer boundless potential for long-term heavy industrial and manufacturing jobs for years to come.
“Eagle Ford shale is just the genesis, but not the overall,” Turcotte said. “Eagle Ford is just what got them going here. But by no means is it the end all.”
Alamo Junction Rail Park
16456 Old Corpus Christi Road, Elmendorf
Contact: Randy Bennett, chief operating officer,
Ryan Lovell, director of real estate and
development, 713-578-1211 or email rlovell@
Mission Rail Park
Located near the intersection of Gillett and
Old Corpus Christi roads, Saspamco
Contact: Terry Warth (sales), CBRE,
210-507-1133 or email firstname.lastname@example.org,
Brandon Gray, email@example.com
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