Site Selection magazine
twitter linkedIn facebook email email email
From Site Selection magazine, September 2017

Engine for Change

BNSF’s strategic layers of site options mean more choice, flexibility and efficiency for a growing number of customers.


Experience matters. Reputations are earned. Proven success matters more than lofty promises. Think about that when you consider BNSF’s track record as the industry’s proven standard for the modern-day design of logistics parks and logistics centers. While both the parks and the centers share BNSF’s experience and innovation, the difference between the two is important. Each offers specific key strategic benefits to investing companies. 

BNSF helped pioneer the logistics park concept more than three decades ago, and from that day forward has consistently and boldly invested in infrastructure and innovation in both logistics parks and logistics centers. The logistics parks are developed and built by developer partners like Hillwood, CenterPoint or NorthPoint, and anchored by a BNSF intermodal facility.

In the logistics centers, BNSF owns the land, its Economic Development team scouts out sites well in advance of customer inquiries, and it builds the shared track, mainline turnouts and other required infrastructure.

The 17,000-acre Logistics Park Alliance, developed by Hillwood in Fort Worth, TX was visionary when it was launched in 1989, but is also solidly grounded in good business sense. Today it is home to a host of global logistics giants like DHL/Excel, Ryder Integrated Logistics, UPS, Walmart and Amazon.

Logistics Park Kansas City in Edgerton, Kansas, opened in 2013, and by the fourth quarter of 2017 it will have 11 million square feet of new construction. Tenants such as Amazon, UPS, Kubota, Spectrum Brands and, most recently, Horizon Global, all have facilities there.

After BNSF opened Logistics Park Kansas City, a year later the BNSF Logistics Center opened in Sweetwater, Texas, with an investment of $28 million to replace existing track and add 40,000 feet of new track to the site. The 75-acre site can serve five unique industrial operations, each with their own rail access. Companies like Cape and Son, Vulcan Material and Fairmont Santrol have eagerly made the logistics center their home.

Both innovative approaches of logistics parks and logistics centers, which are a part of BNSF’s economic development strategic program, can help a customer save time in the development process because the sites are shovel-ready. Customers derive unmatched value no matter which BNSF transportation mode they choose.

“It’s not just money saved, but time,” says Colby Tanner, assistant vice president, BNSF Economic Development. “On average, our customers can save up to nine months of development time, increasing their speed-to-market. This time-savings is critical in order for us and the businesses we partner with to meet the demands of today’s ever-growing marketplace.”

From industrial products such as petroleum or building materials, to consumer products and agriculture, BNSF can transport it all very safely and efficiently.

“Our ability to handle multiple unit trains of agricultural products and industrial products simultaneously within the facility dramatically increases the operational efficiency and volume capabilities,” says Cape and Son’s President Geoff Haney about their facility in BNSF’s Logistics Center in Sweetwater, Texas. “As we look for new product opportunities in the region, the facility design provides growth, flexibility and strategic advantages to be competitive in the marketplace.”

BNSF Economic Development’s positive impact extends to communities and customers alike. Ken Becker, executive director of Sweetwater Economic Development, says his town has benefited greatly from the investment.

“We were very pleased to work with the BNSF team,” he says. “The attention to detail, care and concern for the impact on our community was addressed early on.” 

The list goes on, the host of big-name investors too numerous to name. Guess it’s no surprise that the biggest players in the industry depend on BNSF. The myriad of site options simply means more choice, more flexibility and more efficiency for a growing number of customers.

They’re ready for you, too. Whether you’re selecting a site for a new facility, expanding an existing operation or evaluating transportation options, BNSF’s Economic Development team can help.

Follow so many businesses by putting BNSF’s expertise to work, and you’ll be rewarded with a unique, innovative solution that will set you on the right track for growth.

This Investment Profile has been prepared under the auspices of BNSF. BNSF’s Economic Development team uses a transparent, responsive and collaborative approach for working closely with companies, communities and consultants with the goal of establishing transportation and distribution solutions customized to the needs of the enterprise. For more information, visit

Site Selection online is a worldwide service of Conway Data, Inc. ©1983-2024, all rights reserved. Data is from many sources and not warranted to be accurate or current. To unsubscribe from our print magazine, contact Julie Clarke. For general inquiries, visit our contact page. For technical inquiries contact the Webmaster.