One Down, One to Go

A coalition of groups opposed the Norfolk Southern Intermodal facility in New Market and a megasite proposal off Interstate 81, arguing that such sites should be on existing brownfields rather than taking Jefferson County farmland.

The megasite off I-81 is now a dead project, having lost the support of County Mayor Alan Palmieri, and the county Chamber dropped the idea in the face of determined opposition from property owners. But the coalition now worries that the Chamber will try and shift an industrial park project to the intermodal site. Jefferson County Tomorrow, formed to fight the intermodal, is hoping to keep the support of the White Pine group against the megasite and to oppose any new industrial park in New Market.

Norfolk Southern has been buying up property in New Market for its site, which would have trailer trucks coming to the facility to load the trailers onto railroad cars for shipment. There was an industrial park originally proposed for the project but the idea was dropped due to the state of the economy. The site still needs road closures and possibly the construction of another road to be feasible. The County Commission would have to commit to supporting it.

The Save Our Farms and Homes group that opposed the megasite is not going away. They are trying to ensure that over $400,000 approved for megasite prep is returned to the county and that information on who got paid what be made available.