Thanks to its location along I-85 and I-485, as well as its manufacturing strength, the Concord/Charlotte area is one of the nation’s leading distribution centers.
The city is home to distribution operations for Wal-Mart, Target, Lowes, Family Dollar, Stanley Black & Decker, Ross Stores, West Marine, General Motors, Ingersoll Rand, Lowes, Rite Aid and TJ Maxx.
Charlotte Douglas International Airport (CLT) is the world’s sixth most active airport in total operations and 11th largest in the nation in terms of total passengers. Upon completion of the US Airways/American Airlines merger, CLT will become the second-largest hub of the nation’s largest airline.
The airport’s cargo service handles more than 127,000 tons of domestic and international cargo in 2012. The Charlotte Air Cargo Center, which includes 500,000 square feet of facilities and 50 acres of aircraft ramp space, is served by 20 cargo airlines and 46 freight forwarders.
North Carolina is currently the 16th largest trucking center, while Charlotte employs nearly 20 percent of the state’s work force in the industry. Located here are 329 trucking companies and 28,688 transportation employees, including truckers.
The Charlotte region is at the center of the largest consolidated rail system in the country. Two major rail systems, Norfolk Southern Railway and CSX Transportation, link 43,200 track miles of rail to 23 states, D.C. and Canada. They bring approximately 300 trains through Charlotte weekly. Norfolk Southern’s $50 million computerized yard can classify up to 28,000 cars per day.
Rail also provides piggyback facilities working with trucking capabilities in the city. The groundbreaking has begun on a new $92 million intermodal facility at Charlotte Douglas International Airport. The facility will place a 200-acre intermodal yard between the airport runways. It is expected to be completed in early 2014.