The latest development in the plan for 1,300 acre Norfolk Southern inter-modal facility is the push for an alternative site in East Knox County. Near the East Bridge Industrial Park on Mine Road, engineers have identified 2,600 acres of land already zoned industrial, with water and sewer. There will be a community meeting at New Market Elementary School on Saturday at 10 a.m. hosted by Jefferson County Tomorrow. The meeting is to organize and to urge that the facility be located at an existing brownfield industrial site, rather than on farm land between the elementary school and Esslinger Road, as Norfolk Southern proposes.
Opponents argue the facility will cost Jefferson County $23 million, but the jobs will be created in Knoxville and Morristown. The impetus for the project is energy stimulus money from the Obama administration since putting trucks on rail cars will reduce fuel consumption and cut air pollution.
Jefferson County Tomorrow is a group led by New Market property owners.