Dr. Ernie Nichols: Why do logistics pro-fessionals recognize Memphis and the Mid-South as a great distribution center location?
Don Lake: In Memphis, you’re within 24 hours of 80% of the population of the United States by truck; all five Class I railroads come into Memphis; the amount of warehouse space that’s available in Memphis; and FedEx.
Stu Towner: I think the overall connectivity, you have great Class I connections, the river system, and very good interstate connectivity for trucks. There are also already large businesses established in the area, which help attract other businesses, such as JB Hunt, Tyson, Walmart, FedEx. The Memphis area is a great location for distribution because it's in the heart of the "Battle Ground States" which is where foreign trade is wanting to get to. The reason is exactly what Don said, access within a 24-hour truck drive to so many great markets such as Chicago, Dallas, and Houston. The Mississippi River is basically the dividing line to where 50% of the population live on the East and 50% on the West, so Memphis is a natural mid-point to locate for distribution. The goods are coming in from the west coast, and you have a growing opportunity to use the Panama Canal to bring it further East if you can continue to lower overall logistics costs.
Phillip Sorrell: Our area is centrally located with transportation infrastructure and convergence of I-40 & I-55, five Class I railroads, river access and one of the largest cargo airports in the world. So, you've got that multimodal aspect here that really doesn't converge anywhere else in the U.S. like it does here in the Memphis region.