Freight along the IH 35 corridor has increased dramatically due to the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) from points south of the region originating in Mexico via Laredo and Brownsville. NAFTA has also caused increased port activity resulting in the movement of goods from Corpus Christi, Galveston, Houston, and Beaumont. Central Texas will continue to experience increased cargo movement via truck, rail and air in the foreseeable future. As a major connector for national transportation systems, infrastructure in Central Texas is critical to the effective movement of goods and services. As a truck and rail corridor, KTMPO services the markets that connect Canada, United States & Mexico, including the Houston to Dallas, and Dallas to San Antonio markets in between.

The Central Texas area has a vital purpose in the state’s railroad operation.  The central proximity allows for north/south and east/west rail corridors.   The KTMPO boundaries are served by two “Class 1” railroad companies located in Temple.  Burlington Northern and Santa Fe (BNSF) and Union Pacific (UP) are the predominant railroad freight carriers for the area.  The City of Temple was founded in 1881 by the Gulf, Colorado and Santa Fe Railway Company in order to provide services for railroad equipment and passengers at a major junction point.

The Temple rail yard performs rail car switching, locomotive fueling and is a strategic point for crew changes.  Currently, there is a short-line railroad operation that is providing switching services to specific industries. There are approximately 10 miles of specific industry rail service in the Temple Central Pointe business park.

The U.S. Army maintains its own railhead where vehicles, equipment and containers can be loaded and unloaded to support military missions worldwide as well as sustain ongoing operations at Fort Hood.

Amtrak serves the Central Texas area with a station in downtown Temple. The “Texas Eagle” travels daily between Chicago and San Antonio, allowing rail travelers to connect with other train routes and travel throughout the nation.

There is currently no high-speed rail in our region, although the idea is being explored by TxDOT and private enterprises. It is not known at this time where a future high-speed rail line may be located within Texas, but it will focus on serving the area known as the Texas Triangle, the densely-populated region anchored by San Antonio, Austin, Houston, and Dallas-Fort Worth.

Trucking is the predominant freight mover for the Central Texas area. Freight passes through daily on the Interstate 35 corridor and connects to the West Texas oilfields via US Highway 190 and State Highway 36. In addition to the “through traffic”, Central Texas moves freight by truck for nationally known distributors in the Killeen-Temple region, such as McLane Food Services, Wilson Art International plastic laminate products, ACER computer products, Wal-Mart Distribution Services and H-E-B Distribution products.

Freight Advisory Committee

KTMPO has organized a Freight Advisory Committee (FAC) to address freight related issues in our region. The purpose of this committee is to advise KTMPO on freight related priorities, issues, projects, and funding. KTMPO is seeking members from the private sector to serve on the committee. Input from the private industry is needed to identify problems in the local transportation network and provide ideas to improve the network.

The FAC consists of local major supply and distribution companies, construction material and equipment haulers, health system representatives, as well as rail and air freight companies. Also on the committee are local city and school district representatives, as well as representatives from Ft. Hood, FHWA, and TXDOT. To learn more, view the FAC Pamphlet.

Our next Freight Advisory Committee is on Wednesday, August 16th at 11:30am at the Central Texas Council of Governments located at 2180 N. Main Street in Belton. We welcome the attendance of our local citizens as well as private and public sector freight stakeholders.

Please contact KTMPO for more information.

Freight and Safety Map

The Freight and Safety Web Map allows users to notify KTMPO of any possible freight and safety issues in the region. KTMPO can then use this input to recommend projects when funding does become available.

To make your recommendations, please click here.

For assistance, please refer to the User Guide.