The city of Wilmington, the Wilmington Urban Area Metropolitan Planning Organization, and the North Carolina Department of Transportation directed that a study be performed to investigate the feasibility of realigning the existing CSXT railroad line that traverses in a “V” shape through the city.
Moving this line will provide a new location for rail access to the port, and offer the potential of repurposing the existing CSXT railroad corridor for transit use. Moffatt & Nichol’s team of professional engineers and planners to developed a feasibility study and cost/benefit assessment for this significant rail realignment in the Wilmington Central Business District. Realignment would involve construction of five miles of freight rail line on new location west of downtown Wilmington and includes crossing the Cape Fear River. The feasibility study addressed concepts from the city’s “Moving the Rail” presentation and investigated the relocation of the existing rail “V” encompassing the city of Wilmington. The western route provides a direct route into the Wilmington Terminal Rail Yard serving the Port of Wilmington and surrounding industries. Upon relocation of the rail, repurposing of the abandoned, existing rail line to a potential urban trolley service and greenway, compatible with the character of historic Wilmington was also studied to determine the beneficial impacts to the city.