North Bergen has entered into an Impact Fee Agreement with Strategic Rail Solutions (SRS). The one-of-a-kind $10 million transloading facility is designed to support major infrastructure projects like the Gateway Tunnel and is located in the township.
Mayor Nicholas Sacco and the North Bergen Board of Commissioners voted unanimously to approve a resolution ratifying the financial agreement at its Jan. 12 meeting. The agreement will involve SRS voluntarily paying a fee to the township of 50 cents per ton of material shipped. Officials estimated it could amount to over $150,000 per year.
“Strategic Rail Solutions is an innovative business model that will help support infrastructure projects like Gateway, the Portal Bridge and others that are absolutely critical to our regional economy while also taking thousands of trucks off the roads, reducing emissions and helping our environment,” Sacco said. “We’re very pleased that this company decided to voluntarily work with us to ensure that they make a positive impact on our local community and I thank them for their willingness to be a good neighbor.”
Strategic transloading facility
Located at the intersection of West Side Avenue and 83rd Street in North Bergen, SRS is a 20-acre transloading facility strategically placed on several major freight rail lines. The company is working directly with major contractors on regional infrastructure projects as its preferred vendor to offload tunnel boring material, which is non-hazardous rock, sand and shish that is drilled out of the ground to build new train tunnels.
The material is tested at each individual job site and then transported by truck to SRS, which is conveniently located just miles from both the Lincoln Tunnel and George Washington Bridge. SRS then again tests the material, weighs it and loads it onto rail cars to be transported to faraway processing facilities in “the most efficient, green manner possible.”
Then it transports virgin quarry material back to its location to be used in various local construction projects. According to the township, every SRS railcar can transport as much material as five trucks, meaning that each trip creates “a substantial reduction in carbon emissions and greenhouse gasses.”
Woman and minority-owned business
“Working hand in hand with our host community is incredibly important to our entire team and we are very grateful to Mayor Sacco and the township for being so willing to collaborate with us and for recognizing the transformative nature of this project and the positive impact it will have on not just North Bergen, but the region as a whole and ultimately the country,” said Maria Elisa Guido, president and owner of SRS.
Strategic Rail Solutions is a registered woman and minority-owned business and it plans to hire dozens of unionized employees with competitive salaries and benefits as its operations begin this year, according to the township. Its 13,000 square foot building includes state-of-the-art rail car scales, drainage and paving improvements, concrete floor, loading pedestals, and crane and lay down space.
SRS handles non-hazardous materials only, and will not transport any solid waste or recyclables. The facility is located within a federal Opportunity Zone as well as a state Urban Enterprise Zone.
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