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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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October 16, 2018

Building Relationships: The Key to Making Illinois a Top Location for FDI

Foreign direct investment (FDI) is key to the economic renaissance underway in Illinois. With more than 1,800 foreign owned companies already calling Illinois home and contributing more than $100 billion to the state’s GDP, the potential for growth is tremendous. Relationship building on an international scale is crucial to Illinois’ foreign investment strategy. Over the […]

September 13, 2018

Faber-Castell to Open Cosmetic Manufacturing Facility in Elgin

ELGIN – Governor Bruce Rauner and Faber-Castell Cosmetics announced the company’s first North American manufacturing facility in Illinois. The German company has leased a state-of-the-art manufacturing plant in Elgin that will be dedicated to producing cosmetic pencils for the North American market. The $9 million project will create 50 full-time jobs. The announcement comes after […]

September 11, 2018

Intersect Illinois President and CEO Mark Peterson Named One of America’s Top 50 Economic Developers

Consultant Connect, a consulting agency designed to bridge the gap between economic developers and site consultants, announces its 2018 list of North America’s Top 50 Economic Developers. The economic development professionals selected for this list were nominated by their colleagues in both the economic development industry and the site consultant community for excellent practices, innovation […]

September 5, 2018

How We Lure Business to Illinois – Crain’s Op Ed

Intersect Illinois President & CEO Mark Peterson explains how we bring global business to the state in this recent Crain’s Chicago Business op ed.   When I was asked to come from New York to lead Intersect Illinois, the state’s privately funded economic development office, I wasn’t looking for a new job, but I saw […]

July 20, 2018

Intersect Illinois Strengthens Business Ties with Japan

Intersect Illinois recently helped welcome the newly appointed Japanese Ambassador to the United States to Illinois on a visit that focused on advancing the state’s business partnerships with Japan. His Excellency Shinsuke J. Sugiyama, Ambassador of Japan to the United States, joined the Honorable Naoki Ito, Consul-General of and Japan in Chicago and Japan External […]

Contact Us

Brent Case

Senior Vice President,
Business Development

312-667-6013 brent.case@intersectillinois.org LinkedIn Profile