Port of Huntsville Marks Another Year of Growth in Intermodal Transportation

February 16, 2024

gantry crane at the Port of Huntsville

HUNTSVILLE, Ala., (February 15, 2024) – The International Intermodal Center at the Port of Huntsville announces another year of exceptional growth in 2023. The North Alabama inland port saw 24% more rail lifts in 2023 (27,597) than in 2022 (22, 210).

“The International Intermodal Center at the Port of Huntsville has proudly served North Alabama and South Central Tennessee with comprehensive, high-quality intermodal services since 1986,” said Butch Roberts, CEO of the Port of Huntsville. “We are proud of our successful track record because more than 400 companies trust our capabilities to provide excellent customer service that is vital to their operations.”

Currently the only inland port in North Alabama, the Port of Huntsville provides a single hub location specializing in receiving, transferring, storing and distributing international and domestic cargo via air, rail and highway. The intermodal complex is equipped with a five-mile rail spur connected to the Norfolk Southern Railroad mainline, allowing easy access to ports on both East and West coasts of the United States.

“The Huntsville and North Alabama community is a fast-growing part of the state and supports a number of important industries from aerospace to automotive,” said Shawn Tureman, Norfolk Southern Vice President Intermodal & Automotive Marketing. “Our partnership with the Port of Huntsville allows us to bring Alabama and Tennessee businesses access to major U.S. seaports. Together, we are ensuring that businesses can enjoy efficient, reliable, and economical intermodal service that ensures speed to market of their products.”

State-of-the-art amenities include a rail cargo terminal and ramp, U.S. Customs and Border Protection onsite, Foreign Trade Zone No. 83, and 436,000 square feet of air cargo warehouse and distribution facilities with 35,000 square feet of cold storage. The Port of Huntsville is located alongside I-565 allowing for convenient, uncongested access to the interstate highway system.

Parallel 12,600-foot and 10,000-foot runways permit simultaneous flight operations, and the air cargo ramp is large enough to park ten Boeing 747 aircraft side by side. Huntsville International Airport is ranked 21st in the continental U.S. for international air cargo volume, and the airport serves seven major cargo airlines as well as international freight forwarders DSV and Kerry Logistics.

“Rail traffic has increased year-over-year thanks to our partnership with 14 steamship lines and service provided by Norfolk Southern,” Roberts said. “We have invested more than $70 million in rail intermodal infrastructure and $230 million in air cargo infrastructure. These investments, along with the presence of first-class amenities including a depot storage yard and U.S. Customs onsite guarantee a bright future for HSV. “

The International Intermodal Center at the Port of Huntsville has proudly connected the rapidly growing Huntsville community and the Tennessee Valley region with the rest of the world for 38 years – providing quality, multi-modal transportation to a diverse regional customer base – and stimulating its economic growth and development.

“The impact of our relationships with regional government and community organizations has allowed us to work closely together to produce the kind of prosperity and economic growth that is the envy of cities across the country,” Roberts said. “We look forward to continuing our work to fuel even more expansion and jobs in the communities we serve.”


About the Port of Huntsville

The Port of Huntsville is an inland port facility that is comprised of four operating entities – Huntsville International Airport (HSV), International Intermodal Center, Jetplex Industrial Park and Huntsville International Spaceport – and four contract operations including Foreign Trade Zone No. 83, a fixed base operator, the Four Points by Sheraton hotel and Sunset Landing Golf Course. The Port of Huntsville is governed by an Airport Authority with a five-member Board of Directors. Notable features of HSV include two parallel runways at 10,000 feet and 12,600 feet with a 5,000-foot separation allowing for simultaneous operations during instrument conditions. The International Intermodal Center (IIC) is an inland port of entry for both international air cargo flights and ocean containers arriving by rail. Adjacent to Huntsville International Airport and Jetplex Industrial Park, the IIC offers U.S. Customs & Border Protection Port Directors and Inspectors on site 24/7, on-site freight forwarders and customs brokers, public use foreign trade zone, and direct access to the interstate highway system. The IIC serves as a key logistics hub for receiving, transferring, storing and distributing international and domestic freight via air, rail, and highway. Learn more at

About Norfolk Southern

Since 1827, Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) and its predecessor companies have safely moved the goods and materials that drive the U.S. economy. Today, it operates a customer-centric and operations-driven freight transportation network. Committed to furthering sustainability, Norfolk Southern helps its customers avoid approximately 15 million tons of yearly carbon emissions by shipping via rail. Its dedicated team members deliver more than 7 million carloads annually, from agriculture to consumer goods, and Norfolk Southern originates more automotive traffic than any other Class I Railroad. Norfolk Southern also has the most extensive intermodal network in the eastern U.S. It serves a majority of the country’s population and manufacturing base, with connections to every major container port on the Atlantic coast as well as to major ports in the Gulf of Mexico and Great Lakes. Learn more by visiting