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Keyword: infrastructure

17,000 new jobs supported

Baltimore County Executive Don Mohler has submitted a public infrastructure agreement to the County Council to support Tradepoint Atlantic’s development of 3,200 acres at Sparrows Point.

Public roads, water and sewer infrastructure would support over 17,000 new jobs and $3 billion in economic impact. An analysis commissioned by the County from RKG Associates projects $294 million in County tax revenues through 2048 as a result of development at Tradepoint Atlantic.

“Securing 17,000 new jobs and $3 billion in economic impact anywhere in the County has a positive impact everywhere in the County,” said County Executive Don Mohler. “With proper infrastructure investment, Tradepoint Atlantic will be a transformational economic development project for the County and the entire region.”

Tradepoint Atlantic is turning a vacant 3,200 acre industrial site into a global logistics hub. The redevelopment of the former steel mill site is Baltimore County’s largest economic development project in over a generation.

Proposed Agreement

Under the proposed agreement, which must be approved by the County Council, Baltimore County would reimburse Tradepoint Atlantic for up to $34 million in road construction costs and up to $44 million in water and sewer infrastructure.

“It took months to reach this agreement, but the wait was worth it. This is a much better deal for county taxpayers than the original proposal,” said County Executive Mohler.

The County will reimburse Tradepoint Atlantic for road costs through a portion of the funds that the State of Maryland pays to Baltimore County for new projects within a designated Enterprise Zone.

Water and sewer infrastructure would be funded through the Metropolitan District Fund [Metro], a program designed to fund public water and sewer projects.

Independent Analysis

“We’ve done our due diligence to be certain that our investment in public infrastructure at Tradepoint Atlantic is a good deal for the people of Baltimore County in terms of new jobs and increased revenue to the County,” said Mohler. “That’s why we asked a third-party consultant to conduct an independent economic and fiscal impact analysis.”

The RKG Associates Economic & Fiscal Impact Analysis and Revenue Projections report is available on the Baltimore County website.

Council Action

“Tradepoint Atlantic has the potential to bring thousands of jobs to our county. The Council looks forward to thoroughly studying the agreement and hearing from all stakeholders,” said Council Chair Julian Jones.

The Baltimore County Council is scheduled to discuss the Tradepoint Atlantic public infrastructure agreement at a December 11 public work session.

Tradepoint Atlantic Companies

FedEx, Amazon, Under Armour, Pasha Automotive, Gotham Greens and Perdue are among the companies that already have opened or signed leases for new facilities at Tradepoint Atlantic in Sparrows Point.

“There already are more people working at Tradepoint Atlantic today than when the steel mill closed in 2012,” said Mohler.


Baltimore County has been awarded a $20 million federal grant for infrastructure improvements and expansion of aging marine facilities at Tradepoint Atlantic. The U.S. Department of Transportation’s Transportation Generating Economic Recovery (TIGER) grant will be matched by private investment from Tradepoint Atlantic, developer of 3,100 acres at Sparrows Point.

“This public/private infrastructure investment will ignite job creation in Baltimore County and the entire region by speeding up the turnaround of Sparrows Point from a shuttered steelmaking site into a modern hub for global commerce,” said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.

With funding from the TIGER grant, Tradepoint Atlantic will make structural upgrades to the East-West Berth, modernize it for efficient movement of 21st century cargo, strengthen bulkheads, perform maintenance dredging to allow deep water ships access to the marine terminal, and other necessary improvements designed to leverage existing rail and highway systems on the site.

The investments in dredging, a stronger berth, and short line rail track will facilitate efficient and safe loading and unloading, reducing handling costs for shippers using the facility.

“By partnering with Baltimore County to secure this federal grant for infrastructure investment, we can continue our commitment to creating a first-class facility dedicated to increasing long term job creation in the Baltimore region and lowering prices of American export and import consumer goods,” said Aaron Tomarchio, a Senior Vice President at Tradepoint Atlantic.

The project will expand the region’s bulk handling capability by restoring an obsolete regional marine asset to a state of good repair. The modernization program expands bulk cargo handling capability at Tradepoint Atlantic and does not introduce container cargo handling to the site.

The grant projects will span four years. The TIGER grant is led by the Baltimore County Department of Economic and Workforce Development.

“With this federal transportation grant, Baltimore County continues to proactively put key pieces in place to support development of Tradepoint Atlantic,” said Kamenetz. Baltimore County initiated creation of the Chesapeake Enterprise Zone and established a foreign trade zone to facilitate global commerce.

Economic and Jobs Impact

A recent economic impact report projects Tradepoint Atlantic will generate 17,000 jobs in the Baltimore region, plus another 21,000 jobs during construction. Economic impact is projected to top $3 billion when development of the 3,100 acre site is completed in 2025, according to the Sage Policy Group study.

“There are more than 17,000 jobs on the horizon at full development, but jobs already are coming back to Sparrows Point from world class companies including FedEx Ground, Amazon and Under Armour,” added Kamenetz.


By Steve Walsh, Director, Baltimore County Department of Public Works

Keeping safe and healthy means fighting for clean air and water and serving as good stewards of our land. With 200 miles of waterfront and 2,000 miles of streams and tributaries in Baltimore County, we consider protection of the environment a sacred trust.

When you are a diverse county of more than 831,000 people in a region of over 2.8 million residents, the balance between thoughtful development and preserving environmental resources is one of the major responsibilities of government. We take this responsibility very seriously in Baltimore County.

It’s not just a local issue. Across the country, infrastructure that was built in the 1950s is strained. Water and sewer pipes that were installed decades ago are literally bursting at the seams, increasing the number of water main breaks and waste overflows.

To put the scale of the issue into local perspective, there are 3,160 miles of sewer lines plus 2,139 miles of water lines in Baltimore County alone. Sixty percent of the County's water and sewer pipes are more than 50 years old, which is the average life span of a water and sewer pipe. More than half of all the County's pipes were installed before 1970, with the greatest percentage installed in the 1950s.

We could sit and wait for a major environmental disaster. But, Baltimore County is moving forward, modernizing our crumbling infrastructure with an historic $1.6 billion investment in water and sewer system upgrades.

“These ongoing improvements must be made to protect our citizens, now and for the next generation. As a responsible government, we must bite the bullet now and not kick the can down the road," said Baltimore County Executive Kevin Kamenetz.     

In 2005, Baltimore County entered into a consent decree with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the Maryland Department of the Environment to address these pressing needs. Baltimore County has invested over a billion dollars in water and sewer infrastructure, inspecting hundreds of miles of pipe, rebuilding pumping stations, replacing old lines and monitoring the system. Traditional overflow points have been sealed. Replacement lines have been built to accommodate increased capacity. Sanitary overflows are turning the corner with reductions in annual incidents. All of the County’s major pumping stations have been rebuilt and modernized. The County is on schedule to meet its consent decree obligations and is in good standing.

The County implements a rigorous preventive schedule for inspecting, cleaning and monitoring our entire water and sewer system. When a new development is proposed, we carefully evaluate our capacity to be sure we do not overload the system.  

Every community should expect - and deserves - clean water and safe sewer systems. Infrastructure is a shared benefit. Responsible stewardship of our environmental resources is a shared responsibility.  


 
 
Revised September 11, 2017