Norfolk Southern made it clear at a community meeting last week that they think Mascot is not a suitable site for their new intermodal facility, citing a curve in the track and a large hill. Proponents of the Mascot site, as opposed to farmland in New Market, hope an access road to Interstate 40 will help change their minds.
The flat farm land in New Market alongside a long stretch of straight track would make it cheaper for the railroad to construct the facility, which will take cargo containers from trucks and put them on rail cars for trans-shipment. Knox County Mayor Mike Ragsdale has told proponents of the Knox County Mascot site he is reluctant for Knox County to interfere in the project promoted by Jefferson County Mayor Alan Palmeri.
Meanwhile, an attorney has filed a request with the railroad for copies of confidentiality agreements signed by Jefferson County officials.
There is a document circulating in the community outlining the effects of a chlorine spill on neighboring schools and a nursing home. Norfolk Southern officials said the type of containers being proposed for the site will not be transporting chlorine.