APRIL 30, 2015 — U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx has designated three new Marine Highway Projects.
The Mississippi and Illinois Rivers, previously designated as the M-55 and M-35, connecting Chicago and Minneapolis to New Orleans, will serve as the primary routes for a new container-on-barge service being developed by communities along the rivers.
The M-495 Potomac River Commuter Ferry Project will connect work and residential centers located along the Potomac, Occoquan, and Anacostia Rivers, providing a waterborne alternative for moving passengers and freight within the region and increase the resiliency of existing regional transit system.
The third service is a proposed route that will provide access to origins and destinations east of the Hudson River for freight arriving and departing the Port Newark Container Terminal, enhancing New York Harbor's cross harbor freight network.
According to the U.S. Maritime Administration, a marine highway project is a planned service, or expansion of an existing service, on a designated Marine Highway Route, that provides new modal choices to shippers of cargo, reduces transportation costs, and provides public benefits including reduced air emissions, reduced road maintenance costs, and improved safety and resiliency impacts.