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Transportation & Infrastructure

Overview

Global Access at the Heart of the U.S.

Home to five international airports, seven Class I railroads, the third largest interstate highway system in the country and the third largest intermodal port in the world, Illinois offers unparalleled access to global markets.

The state’s central location puts businesses, people and goods within a four-hour flight of the entire North American market—not to mention non-stop service to more than 50 international destinations.

In addition, the state offers businesses top-notch digital infrastructure, reliable, low-cost energy and abundant water and natural resources.

Dynamic Road and Rail Network

 

Illinois’ highly efficient network of road and rail includes seven Class I freight railroads, the largest intermodal system in the U.S.—the third largest in the world—and the third largest interstate highway system in the nation, complete with 2,158 miles of road.

Chicago is one of the largest rail corridors in North America, with approximately twenty-five percent of all U.S. freight traffic passing through it.

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Railway at O'Hare International Airport

A Global Air Transport Hub

 

Ranked #1 in the U.S. for non-stop overseas flights, Illinois is a global hub for air transport. The state is home to 12 major airports, including Chicago O’Hare, which is among the world’s busiest airports, served by all significant international carriers.

Home to operations of United, Southwest and American airlines, Illinois boasts the only “Triple Hub” in North America, providing passengers with more than 1,400 daily departures and non-stop services to more than 200 destinations.

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Ports Built for Trade

Offering access to two major water ports—the Port of Chicago and the Port of East St. Louis—Illinois’ connectivity doesn’t stop with rail and air.

Illinois also boasts the largest inland container port in North America—CenterPoint Intermodal Center, located in Joliet, IL—and 13 port districts and waterways, which provide access to the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic Ocean.

It’s no wonder Illinois ranks as the fifth largest exporting state in the U.S. and the top exporter in the Midwest.

Low-Cost Energy, High-Quality Digital

Illinois offers low energy rates and deregulation, abundant water and natural resources and robust digital infrastructure that keep your business running at a steady clip without compromising your bottom line.

The average cost of electricity in Illinois is significantly lower than many competitor states, including Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware and neighboring Wisconsin, and the state boasts among the best energy reliability in the Midwest.

The state is also committed to increasing its share of renewable energy and investing in smart grid and fiber optic technology to bring 21st century energy and digital solutions to its businesses and residents. A major digital hub, Chicago has among the highest fiber optic capacity of any metro area in the country and three of the world’s largest data centers are in Chicago or its suburbs.

Solar Array

Quick Facts
12
Major Airports
Quick Facts
25%
of all U.S. Freight Traffic Moves Through Chicago
Relevant News
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July 16, 2019

A Letter From Our President & CEO: The Most Effective Site Selection Tools

From Intersect Insight, the Quarterly newsletter highlighting Illinois economic development news.    Dear Colleague, Intersect Illinois recently launched a new tool aimed at speeding up and simplifying the process of attracting job growth throughout the state. Our new real estate database and proposal management system, hosted on our website IntersectIllinois.org, provides immediate access to in-­‐depth […]

June 10, 2019

Intersect Illinois Brings Together Team Illinois to Attend SelectUSA Summit

Economic development partners from throughout Illinois to showcase the state’s assets and attract international companies at annual trade and foreign direct investment summit Team Illinois, a collaboration of economic development officials coordinated by Intersect Illinois, recently came together to exhibit at the 2019 SelectUSA Investment Summit in Washington, D.C. The annual event connects international companies […]

April 9, 2019

New ADM Animal Nutrition Facility Uses Industry-Leading Technology to Meet Customer Needs for Livestock Feed

DECATUR, Ill., April 3, 2019—Archer Daniels Midland Company (NYSE: ADM) today celebrated the opening of its new high-tech livestock feed facility in Quincy, Illinois. This is the fourth cutting-edge animal nutrition manufacturing facility in North America opened in recent months by the global leader in value-added products and solutions for both production and companion animals. […]

March 13, 2019

Illinois Featured in United’s Hemispheres Magazine

Illinois is featured in United’s Hemispheres magazine’s Dossier. More than 700,000 copies of the issue occupy every seat pocket on every United flight in the month of March, and 40 pages of the magazine are devoted to showcasing Illinois and its unmatched academic institutions, its wide variety of communities, and its unique business advantages. A […]

March 11, 2019

Illinois Ranks Third in Site Selection’s Governors Cup

Illinois ranks third in the country in Site Selection’s Governors Cup. The magazine ranks states based on new and expanded corporate facilities. Illinois has 444 projects recorded from 2018. The annual analysis is regarded by the corporate real estate world as the “industry scoreboard.” In addition to Illinois’ ranking, Chicago has once again been named […]