FreightWeekSTL returns this year in a virtual format May 24 through May 28. For the fourth year in a row, St. Louis Regional Freightway is partnering with Inland Marine Expo (IMX), which brings hundreds of inland waterway experts and industry leaders to the St. Louis region. IMX 2021 will host an in-person conference format with COVID-19 protocols in place from May 24 through May 26 in downtown St. Louis.
The St. Louis Regional Freightway will participate virtually all week by offering several engaging panel discussions and a keynote presentation that collectively will spotlight the latest trends and innovations influencing global freight movement while highlighting the global connectivity of the St. Louis region.
Virtual FreightWeekSTL 2021 offers an opportunity to hear from and engage with industry leaders, freight and logistics experts, international shippers, carriers and other leading companies – as well as regional leaders from Eastern Missouri and Southwestern Illinois.
“Even though we had to quickly pivot to a fully online format last year due to pandemic restrictions, the third annual FreightWeekSTL was a tremendous success and presented some of the most relevant and timely topics in the logistics industry,” said Mary Lamie, executive vice president of Multi-Modal Enterprises for Bi-State Development, which operates the St. Louis Regional Freightway as one of its enterprises. “We are excited to continue the tradition this year of bringing together forward thinkers engaged in developing the latest innovations that are shaping the future of the freight industry.”
Virtual FreightWeekSTL 2021 sessions scheduled include the following:
• A panel discussion highlighting the global connectivity of the St. Louis region’s rail and inland waterway system supported by multimodal infrastructure investment and container-on-barge advancements.
• A discussion on the key role of Multi-State Agriculture Highway Corridors in efficiently moving domestic agricultural products and supporting continued market competitiveness by providing global and national connections to the supply chain.
• A keynote presentation by Aaron Katrancha, director of Breakbulk and Ro-Ro Services, Port of Virginia. Attendees tuning in will hear firsthand how dedicated rail service to the thriving Port of Virginia enhances the St. Louis region’s global connectivity.
• A socially distanced riverboat tour/lunch on the Mississippi River, which will highlight key freight assets and opportunities that position the St. Louis region as a global freight and logistics hub, providing an up-close look at roads and bridges; rail and barge facilities; multimodal freight transfer services; and the ports and infrastructure that make this section of the Mississippi River the Ag Coast of America.
• A spotlight on the St. Louis region’s resiliency, economic viability and locational advantages that are evident in the successful redevelopment of the former Ford Motor Company and Chrysler Assembly Plant sites and contribute to the continued activity underway at the busy General Motors Wentzville Assembly Plant.
• An overview of how the ecosystem of the 60-mile Illinois Route 3 manufacturing & logistics corridor in Southwestern Illinois supports complex and integrated manufacturing operations, sparks new industrial development interest, and continues to evolve and grow by repurposing its vacant industrial sites through infrastructure investment and public-private partnerships.
The week will also be highlighted by the release of the latest Industrial Market Report for the region, and the live digital release of the 2022 Priority Projects List. The Priority Projects list is a valuable tool used by the St. Louis Regional Freightway to advocate for support and funding for critical infrastructure improvements that strengthen the St. Louis region’s position as a world-class freight and logistics hub supporting national and global supply chains.
“Hosting this series of events virtually allows us to share important and interesting freight-related topics in a flexible way that makes them available to the broadest audience possible to access on their schedules. We’re anticipating another record-setting audience with news coming out of this year’s conference that will shine a spotlight on the St. Louis region as an innovator in freight transportation and further elevate our standing as an excellent freight hub and multimodal center,” Lamie said.
The St. Louis Regional Freightway is operated by Bi-State Development, a dynamic and multi-faceted resource for economic development in the St. Louis region. Bi-State Development was tapped in 2014 to establish and globally market a freight district for freight operations and opportunities within the bi-state area.
“Bi-State Development is proud of the role our Freightway enterprise continues to play highlighting the unique advantages the St. Louis region offers as one central U.S. location delivering global access,” said Taulby Roach, president and CEO of Bi-State Development. “FreightWeekSTL is a signature initiative in The Freightway’s efforts to highlight the region’s greatest freight and site selection strengths while tightly connecting the private and public sectors in support of initiatives and investments that enhance our standing as a premier international freight hub. We expect a great response to our 2021 event.”
To learn more about FreightWeekSTL, see the dates and times for each session or register to attend the virtual sessions, visit https://freightweekstl.thefreightway.com/. For those who are unable to tune in live for the individual sessions, all of the content presented will be accessible on the website and via the organization’s social media channels. For additional details on the Inland Marine Expo, visit https://inlandmarineexpo.com/.