In August 2014, the Maritime Administration (MARAD) granted the five Upper Mississippi River states’ request and designated the Upper Mississippi River as the M-35 Marine Highway Corridor, extending from St. Paul, Minnesota to Grafton, Illinois. Under this designation, the states of Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, and Wisconsin will work with industry and other regional partners to improve freight mobility through innovative, integrated strategic approaches as well as to promote the inland waterways as a means to relieve landside transportation congestion and improve the nation’s overall transportation system. The designation offers new opportunities for ports, terminals, and operators to access federal funding, technical support, and other resources to expand or develop new shipping services. This regional workshop involving the Upper Mississippi ports, terminals, and operators is a first step to begin discussions about how best to increase commerce on the Upper Mississippi to meet the region’s and nation’s freight transportation needs.
February 25, 2015