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Forging stronger connections

If your eyes glaze over when you hear buzzwords and jargon like “out of the box” and “new paradigm,” you probably aren’t going to be very excited that a group called Conexus believes a new plan for intermodal logistics is going to be a game-changer for Indiana.

But it really is a big deal that should be great for business – but could also raise questions of security.

The Indiana Rail Road Co. and the Canadian National Railway Co. will develop a rail terminal in downtown Indianapolis that will cut the time it takes for businesses to receive and send shipments from and to Asia. Goods shipped from China and South Korea to the West Coast Canadian ports of Vancouver and Prince Rupert will be taken by rail to Indianapolis. The new route will bypass the heavy rail bottleneck in the Chicago region. Now, an Indianapolis-Asia shipment takes about 23 to 25 days; the new agreement is expected to cut that by about five days.

The shipments will come in containers that can easily be transferred from rail to trucks.

Conexus is a politically connected non-profit group promoting Indiana’s advanced manufacturing sector and logistics – moving people and, especially, freight.

While the new terminal sounds great for business, we’re interested in hearing more about plans for security – especially considering this terminal will be near Lucas Oil Stadium. In the days following 9/11, Americans heard much about the vulnerability of ports and terminals to the contents of containers from overseas.