Job & Economic Development

Expansions to existing terminal facilities are important to our economic future. They will benefit Washington’s economy by:

  • Meeting rail investment needs
  • Balancing trade
  • Securing competitive markets through new and existing business

An August 2013 Policy Briefing by the Washington Research Council cites Washington’s high dependency on trade and the importance of reliable, safe, and effective rail transportation in meeting these import and export demands.

This same report found that 40 percent of Washington jobs are trade-related. Developing these facilities will create more than 9,000 jobs during the construction phase and more than 2,100 permanent, family wage jobs with an annual payroll of over $115 million.

Agriculture leaders are speaking out in favor of terminal expansion because it will open new markets for Northwest farmers:

“The U.S. Grain Council is a strong proponent of port infrastructure investment…increasing exports and export-related jobs can be accomplished while meeting out nation’s strong environmental laws and regulations.” – Floyd Gaibler, Director of Trade Policy, U.S. Grain Council

“The ability of special interests to pick and choose what goods and services can access our state’s infrastructure is not a path to growth.” – Mike LaPlant, President of the Washington Farm Bureau

There would also be positive impact for the communities served, and for our state. Some of the facilities will fund job-training programs at local schools and community colleges; others will clean up old, brownfield industrial sites. And collectively, estimates show that construction of these facilities will generate more than $130 million for local and state government, and millions of additional tax revenue each year for the next thirty years.

You can stay up-to-date with the progress of these projects by signing up for the Alliance newsletter here.

Did you know?

  • Port expansion projects in the NW will create more than 10,000 jobs, and help grow export related industries that support 40% of all jobs in Washington state.
  • Private investment developers have pledged $1.5 billion to build the terminals to full capacity.
  • New infrastructure projects would be a huge boost to the Washington’s construction industry, which is at one of its lowest points of the decade.