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TexAmericas Center has finalized a contract with Spring Creek Enterprises to operate a new bulk load transload facility to serve the greater Texarkana and Four States region.

"We are in the timber industry, handling logs, or 'roundwood material,'" said Michael Stringer, Spring Creek Enterprises president. "But our facility is being set up to handle a wide range of large, heavy cargo for transport and storage.

The company will implement a rail-to-truck transloading process used primarily for bulk item transport, which would include metal, timber, construction materials, aggregate, consumer products and building products.

The 10 acres of dedicated outside storage is expandable.

With additional investment the building will be able to accommodate agriculture products, liquids and fuels.

TexAmericas and Spring Creek are working through the design phase of retrofitting an existing 22,000-square-foot warehouse to support the transload operations.

The new SCE Transload Facility at TexAmericas Center is just off Interstate 30 about 15 miles west of Texarkana and "will facilitate the seamless transportation of goods and materials in the Texarkana area," said Stringer.

"With the establishment of this transload facility, businesses no longer need to be located along the railroad to be railroad customers. The TexAmericas Center location will be one of the closest public transload facilities for companies located between Dallas and Little Rock," he said.

"With a capacity of 12 railcars, the facility will also offer a laydown area for products to be stored on-site. Indoor warehousing space is also available. A truck scale is conveniently located less than a mile from the site. Customers may also use the new facility to distribute bulk products among their own local storefronts and sales centers, allowing them to take advantage of the benefits of bulk rail shipping without having their own rail-served location."

TexAmericas Center is directly served by the Texas and Northeastern Railroad, which pulls out of the Union Pacific yard located in downtown Texarkana less than 15 miles away. Rail car storage is available on the TexAmericas Center footprint as TexAmericas Center owns more than 30 miles of rail including a 250+ rail car storage yard.

Eric Voyles, executive vice president at TexAmericas Center said, "The SCE Transload Facility, "can be used to handle virtually all commodities shipped by rail or truck, including metal, timber, or lumber. SCE will arrange to unload railcars for customers at this location. Planned improvements, will allow for plastics, grain and other in demand items to be handled such as coal, gravel, road salt, or cement. A pricing estimate can be developed wee as little as four pieces of information: 1) type of product, 2) number of truck loads to be moved, 3) origination location, and 4) destination location."

Depending on whether the origin or destination has rail service, transloading can happen a few different ways, but here's a basic example from a press release:

— Products are loaded onto a truck.

— The truck transports the products to a transload facility.

— At the transload facility, products are transferred to a rail car.

— The product type determines how it is transferred (e.g., pump, crane or forklift) and to which type of rail car (e.g., tank car, flat car or boxcar).

— A railroad company transports the car to a railhead.

— If needed, products are transferred back to trucks for final delivery at another transload facility.

SCE's transloading capabilities feature full access to the rail for metals, timber, building materials, sand, aggregate, pipe, liquids and gasses, merchandise, plastics, pulp and paper and a host of other commodities.

"We began negotiations with TexAmericas Center in November of last year, letting them know what we needed to set up operations," Stringer said. "TexAmericas Center had what we needed to set up a facility, but it took time to dot all the I's and cross the T's. We are ready for business."

Spring Creek Enterprises operates facilities throughout the Ark-La-Tex. Their corporate headquarters is in Atlanta, Texas.

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