Major highway, rail and air assets give the Best Southwest Region a transportation advantage
A top-notch transportation network helps the Best Southwest Partnership region remain a driving force for attracting more business growth.
The two-county region offers access to Interstate 20, I-35E, I-45 and highways 67, 287 and 342, making it an ideal location for distribution, warehousing and logistics companies. It’s a key reason why major companies such as Ace Hardware, BMW, FedEx Ground, JCPenney and Kohl’s have major distribution operations in the region, along with L’Oreal, Mars Petcare, Quaker Oats, The Home Depot, Toys “R” Us and Whirlpool.
In addition, the region offers Class I rail service through BNSF and Union Pacific, two of the nation’s largest carriers. Union Pacific operates the Dallas Intermodal Terminal (DIT), located between Hutchins and Wilmer 12 miles from downtown Dallas. The DIT allows truckers easy access to I-45 and I-20. The terminal includes a network of tracks for easy transfer of cargo from trains to trucks and vice versa.
100 Percent Booked
The Best Southwest Partnership offers standout air service, including proximity to Dallas Fort Worth International Airport and Dallas Love Field. Dallas Executive Airport, just 10 miles from downtown Dallas, offers a full range of services for corporate and general aviation aircraft.
Mid-Way Regional Airport, located in Southern Ellis County, serves a variety of corporate customers. Mid-Way saw 45,000 takeoffs and landings in 2017, and officials expect that number to rise in 2018.
“The 2018 calendar year is looking very good for our area – it’s really booming here in Ellis County,” says Judy Demoney, Mid-Way Regional Airport manager. “In 2017, Mid-Way Regional completed construction of our final 11 hangars so that we’re up to 70 hangars now, and we are 100 percent booked.”
Demoney adds that private developers are constructing a Mid-Way Industrial Park on property adjacent to the airport, eventually offering 160,000 square feet of warehouse space.
“Mid-Way is a nice alternative to the busy Metroplex airspace,” she says. “We are an easy in, easy out airport.”
Heliport DeSoto offers service to downtown Dallas and Fort Worth and can be used by public safety personnel, emergency medical crews, broadcast news media and corporate businesses.
At Lancaster Regional Airport, which features 150 hangars, construction began in January 2018 on a new terminal building that will feature conference rooms, a lounge area and restaurant. The airport features the onsite Cold War Air Museum and Commemorative Air Force Museum.
“We have about 50 takeoffs/landings each day and add to the quality of life in the Southern Dallas County area,” says Kellen Benbrook, director of Lancaster Regional Airport. “Our 6,500-foot runway can land any private plane, and companies that use our airport include AT&T, Petco and Walmart. We expect to open our new terminal in late 2018. “
Spreading Their Wings
With all the air service options in the region, also thriving are aviation-related companies that are choosing Southern Dallas County and Northern Ellis County. One such company is Dallas Aeronautical Services, which operates out of Cedar Hill to design, manufacture and repair parts and flight controls for the corporate jet sector.
“We started as an engineering and tooling company in 2004 and have evolved into a company that serves aircraft companies throughout the United States and around the world,” says Don Snodgrass, president of Dallas Aeronautical Services. “When jets break, most companies call DAS.”
DAS provides parts and repairs for customers who own aircraft such as Beechjet, Boeing, Bombardier, Gulfstream, Hawker Beechcraft and more. DAS employees average 18 years of aviation experience, and Snodgrass says the company pays some of the top-dollar salaries in the region.
“We have 60 employees in Cedar Hill and hope to grow our workforce to 100 by the end of 2018,” he says. “Our employees enjoy working in Cedar Hill. City officials are easy to work with, we have good logistics and location on Interstate 67, and we do business in a quiet business park. I wouldn’t want to be anywhere else.”