Introduction to Coastal Connect

During the early history of the United States, America's waterways and coastal areas were the gateways and primary means of supporting interstate commerce. As a result of that early transportation development, the nation's population and larger cities grew along the U.S coasts. To support that population growth, the Interstate Highway was created to assure that our goods were delivered to the marketplace. That highway system has served our nation well for over 50 years.

The state of our nation's transportation system has been the subject of extensive U.S Government and State interest. There is widespread recognition of the urgent need to expand our Intermodal transportation system, with broad agreement that the current capacity will be overwhelmed by increases in economic activity and global trade. Originally the U.S. Department of Transportation estimated that by 2020 highway congestion would be so severe as to virtually stifle commerce. This estimate was based upon the Government's projection that freight transportation demand will increase by 60 % within that time period. However, the date of gridlock on our highway system has since been advanced to a period closer to 2012.

Coastal Connect has been developed to return the nation transportation system to its early roots with an environmentally responsible and scheduled service of coastal ships operating parallel to the I-95 interstate corridor. A service that will take advantage of the enormous capacity that can be added to our nation's transportation system by developing what has now been designated by the U.S. Maritime Administration as the Marine Highway.

Utilizing proven technologies established in European short sea shipping services, Coastal Connect will introduce a fleet of "RoRo" (Roll on Roll off) vessels with a capacity of one hundred (100) 53' domestic trailers providing an overnight scheduled service between several ports within the New England and Mid Atlantic coastal metropolitan areas. Using compressed natural gas as a primary fuel to reduce ship emissions and operating at speeds of 20 knots, the service will provide an alternative to the I-95 congestion and delays experienced by truckers and shippers within the region. An alternative that is positioned to maintain corporate environmental sustainability and establish a reliable transportation schedule for truckers to avoid the daily congestion bottlenecks along the corridor.