It’s easy for distribution and logistics companies to get carried away in Southeast Alabama, where a strong transportation network provides multimodal options for businesses needing to move products across the country and around the world.
For the trucking industry, Southeast Alabama offers prime proximity to major Southeastern markets via Interstate 10, I-65 and I-85 and U.S. highways 10, 29, 82, 84, 231, 331 and 431. Southeast Alabama is a short distance from the Florida and Georgia borders, and there is potential for even more connectivity in the Southeast with an under-construction extension of the I-85 outer loop.
“We run tractor trailers in our business and use all of the interstates and highways in Southeast Alabama,” says Frankie Sarris, vice president of sales and commerce for Wiley Sanders Truck Lines in Troy.
“Our company hauls freight to 48 states, Canada and Mexico, and we have 700 employees. Our driver pool primarily comes from the Southeast.” Wiley Sanders Truck Lines was established in 1959 and is a major hauler for a variety of companies, including paper mills in Alabama like International Paper, Georgia-Pacific and Kimberly Clark. “Those companies rely heavily on transportation, and Southeast Alabama has always been a great place for us to do business,” Sarris says.
The Southeast Alabama transportation network is also utilized by hundreds of other hauling companies that transport products, including large logistics and shipping companies like Boyd Brothers, Buddy Moore Trucking, HD Edgar Trucking, Max Hughes Truck Line and Shoreline Transportation of Alabama.
Rail and Seaport Access
Besides a good highway system, Southeast Alabama offers rail service via CSX, Norfolk Southern, Gulf & Ohio and Bayline Railroad. Seaport facilities close by the region include Mobile, as well as Panama City and Jacksonville, Fla. Seaport access is important because more than 100 manufacturing companies in Southeast Alabama deal with foreign importation and exportation of their products. The region includes numerous industrial parks that are especially attractive to logistics companies because they provide convenient access to Southeast Alabama, as well as southwest Georgia and the Florida Panhandle. Industrial park facilities in the region are situated in the counties of Barbour, Bullock, Crenshaw, Covington, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike.
Southeast Alabama features a number of airports including the South Alabama Regional Airport, Enterprise Municipal Airport, Franklin Field (Union Springs), Geneva Municipal Airport, Headland Municipal Airport and Troy Municipal Airport. Also on the convenient travel list is Dothan Regional Airport, which serves a metropolitan area population of 500,000 residents in Alabama, Georgia and Florida.
The regional airport hosts Dothan-Houston County General Purpose Foreign Trade Zone No. 233, which allows goods to be handled and exported without customs intervention. Dothan also offers a convenient option for passengers wanting daily service to Atlanta. “Approximately 80,000 commercial air passengers pass through Dothan Regional Airport each year, connecting through Atlanta to destinations all over the world,” says Art Morris, manager of Dothan Regional Airport.