- Centrally located in the middle of the U.S. East Coast, creating easy access to major hubs like New York and Atlanta
- Less than one day’s drive to 40% of the U.S. population
- Located at the interstate confluence of I-95, I-85, I-295 and I-64 as well as U.S. Route 460, a direct connection to the Port of Virginia
- Rail-sided sites served by both CSX and Norfolk Southern
- Shovel-ready sites, available warehousing and high-bay distribution space
- 90-minute drive to the Port of Virginia which offers the deepest natural harbor and port on the East Coast, fully prepared to accommodate 10,000 TEU ocean going vessels
- UPS and FedEx Freight hubs within the region
The Gateway Region has always been a distribution gateway – a place to reach markets, both domestically and abroad, for major distributors like Amazon.com. Over time, it has increased as a logistics center, so much so that the U.S. Army located its logistics university here and consolidated training for its entire quartermaster, culinary and ordnance corps in the region. The strategic location and concentration of expertise attracts companies from a cross-section of logistics-centric industries. To supplement the region’s logistics expertise and growing status, a logistics research center of excellence has formed in the region Commonwealth Center for Advanced Logistics Systems (CCALS), set to produce groundbreaking innovations in the industry.
Local Logistics Expertise
- Fort Lee U.S. Army Installation: The Department of Defense has designated Fort Lee as the global logistics center for the U.S. Army’s worldwide operations. This resulted in a doubling of the installation’s population and footprint between 2006-2012 to allow for training and operative functions related to logistics. With approximately 400 military exits per year in the metro area, companies have access to a highly skilled workforce with unique logistics training and strongly disciplined work ethic. Learn more about military presence in the region
- The Defense Logistics Agency: Aviation, also known as the Defense Supply Center Richmond, employs more than 3,500 personnel in supply, contracting and quality assurance to manage the supply chain for the U.S. military, especially aviation parts.
- CCALS creates a brain trust between Virginia Commonwealth University, the University of Virginia, Virginia State University and Longwood University focusing on modeling and simulation, intellectual property and workforce development increasing this region’s status as a center of excellence in logistics. Founding members include Logistics Management Resources and LMI.
- CCALS partners Logistics Management Resources and LMI serve the local area with logistics services for the largest customer of logistics services domestically, the federal government, among other customers. Services include system design and implementation, sustainment, installation support, business process analysis and project management.
- The list of major distribution & logistics employers in the area is headed by Amazon.com, Walmart, Food Lion and Ace Hardware
- DSC Logistics, another example of thriving existing business expertise in the region, operates a major facility and office in the area, working to achieve customers’ supply chain management goals.
- Over 100 trucking companies are based in the metropolitan area, 60 with more than 15 trucks. This amounts to more than 21,000 trucks based in the region.
- Norfolk Southern and CSX operate rail services intersecting in the region, and half of Virginia’s total intermodal hubs operate in the region, transferring cargo between ships, aircraft, road and rail.
- UPS, FedEx and the U.S. Postal Service operate major hubs in the area and provide third-party logistics services.
Port of Virginia
The Port of Virginia operates multiple facilities with millions of containers moved each year and producing additional expertise in reach of Gateway Region logistics employers. Hampton Roads, the region in which the port operates, also has expertise in modeling and simulation and has major shipbuilding and other manufacturing operations from which to draw industry expertise. Oceana, one of the largest U.S. naval air stations in the world, is there as well. Washington, D.C. and the surrounding area is an additional resource, with its enormous wealth of government contractors managing logistics for companies involved in defense, information technology, energy and other major industries. With these major logistics centers next door and the wealth of expertise already in the area, a strong workforce and abounding business opportunities are all within reach.
The Port of Richmond, located even closer and used by regional manufacturers and distributors, is linked to the seaports to the east by three-times weekly barge service and has associated intermodal logistics expertise.
Training & Education
Virginia State University , centrally located in the region, offers a degree in Logistics and Industrial Technology, grooming the next generation workforce. The curriculum has been shaped by an industry-based advisory board ensuring that coursework, research and program competencies translate into a workforce with relevant skills sets for materials, supply chain, business and IT.
The Community College Workforce Alliance (CCWA) is a network of local community colleges that delivers courses and custom-designed instruction and training programs for companies. Relevant logistics courses range from operations management to truck driving, preparing individuals for a career in transportation, distribution and logistics. CCWA customizes training according to companies’ specific occupational needs and utilizes regional expertise to teach the classes. Classes are scheduled as needed by the partner company for a unique training timeline that gives consideration to special company processes, practices and culture ultimately crafting a workforce to meet a company’s needs.
Other Virginia colleges and universities produce graduates of Managerial Economics and Logistics, Business Management, Supply-Chain Management, Process Engineering and more. More on Gateway Region’s talent
Top Local Employers
|Name||Product or Service||Employees|
|Defense Logistics Agency||Defense supplies contracting||2,318|
|United Parcel Service (UPS)||Regional distribution center (incl. additional MSA offices)||2,490|
|Walmart Distribution Center*||Department store distribution||800|
|Food Lion Distribution Center*||Grocery distribution||500|
|Ace Hardware||Hardware products distribution center||275|
|Standard Motor Products||Distribution center||275|
Selected Occupations Employment & Wages
|Occupation (SOC)||Regional Avg. Wage||National Avg. Wage||Current Employment||Extended Employment*|
|Laborers and Freight, Stock & Material Movers (53-7062)||$27,200||$27,800||13,608||54|
|Packers & Packagers (53-7064)||$24,100||$23,700||3,786||16,112|
|Heavy & Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers (53-3032)||$41,400||$42,500||9,248||5,958|
|Transportation, Storage & Distribution Managers (11-3071)||$99,400||$95,100||610||16,038|
*Includes trainable persons currently employed in occupations with relatable skills
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics, Chmura Analytics, Q3 2016; latest data as of Jan 1, 2016
Top Trucking Lines (15+ Trucks), Richmond-Petersburg Area
|Trucking Line||Locality||# Trucks||# Drivers|
|Estes Express Lines||Richmond||6,216||6,107|
|Owen & Minor Distributing||Mechanicsville||379||445|
Source: Quick Transport Solutions, June 2016