State OKs lease to CSX for expansion in Jessup


In a move that could add as many as 200 jobs in Maryland, the state Board of Public Works approved yesterday a lease of 45 acres of state land to CSX Transportation, which plans to expand its Jessup automobile-shipping facility.

The expansion will let General Motors Corp. join Ford Motor Co. and Chrysler Corp. in using the Dorsey Run Road facility, where cars -- shipped by rail from factories -- are loaded onto trucks for shipment to dealers.

The state said the rail yard was already the biggest factory-to-dealer distribution facility used by Ford and Chrysler in the mid-Atlantic area.

Mark L. Wasserman, the state secretary of economic and employment development, told the board that the expanded CSX distribution center was "a significant win" in the economic-development war with Pennsylvania.

He said the CSX expansion meant that Maryland had beaten out Pennsylvania, since the General Motors business had been handled by Conrail in two Pennsylvania towns.

Maryland and CSX succeeded because of the state's highway system and because Maryland had land for expansion adjacent to CSX's current location, Mr. Wasserman said.

The lease will run through 2019 at an initial rent of $221,892 a year. It will be adjusted periodically so that the state continues to earn a 12 percent annual return.

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