From here to anywhere and back
The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region has a strong logistical advantage through an exceptional transportation infrastructure, with convenient access to:
- DHL Express Global Superhub and Amazon Air air cargo hubs at Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG)
- Three interstates
- The Ports of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky
- Two Class I railroads and one Class II railroad
- Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky (TANK) (bus service)
Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport
Northern Kentucky is home to the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky International Airport (CVG), the seventh-largest cargo airport in North America, and 34th in the world. CVG saw a 149% increase in cargo between 2015 and 2022. The airport served more than 7.5 million travelers in 2022, a 21% increase over 2021.
Our award-winning cargo transportation infrastructure at CVG received the 2020 Diamond Award for Air Cargo Excellence, Air Cargo World, and was named a 2023 Best Regional Airport in North America by Skytrax World Airport Awards.
With 57 nonstop destinations, 170 peak-day departures, and direct service to 38 of the top 40 US markets, CVG is the only airport in the US to receive the Safety Act designation and certification from the Department of Homeland Security, meaning CVG meets or exceeds DHS security standards.
Additional transportation infrastructure located within the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region, Lunken Airport in eastern Cincinnati offers charter service to businesses and individuals, as well as sightseeing tours and aircraft maintenance services.
Several major metropolitan airports are located within a two-hour drive of the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region:
- Dayton International Airport (Dayton, OH)
- Blue Grass Airport (Lexington, KY)
- Louisville International Airport (Louisville, KY)
- Port Columbus International Airport (Columbus, OH)
The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region is strategically located at the center of a major transportation infrastructure network that serves a large portion of the East Coast and the Midwest.
Interstate highway transportation infrastructure traversing this area:
- I-75: north/south through MI, OH, KY, TN, GA and FL
- I-71: northeast/southwest through OH and KY
- I-74: southeast/northwest through OH, IN, IL and IA
U.S. highways in the area:
- I-275: a perimeter highway linking Northern Kentucky, Cincinnati, and Indiana
- I-471: linking downtown Cincinnati with I-275
The major industrial and commercial areas of Northern Kentucky are within the Greater Cincinnati Interstate Commercial Zone. Established by the Interstate Commerce Commission, the zone permits carriers to make direct deliveries to the consignee without passing through the carrier’s terminal. More than 900 interstate common motor-freight carriers and 29 freight forwarders serve the Tri-state area. Twenty major metro areas are within one day’s truck driving time, and 30 additional markets can be reached with second-day service through our vital transportation infrastructure.
The Great Lakes and Ohio River Division of the United States Army Corps of Engineers, located in Cincinnati, Ohio, covers 335,000 miles and 17 states. The Ohio River and its seven navigable tributaries comprises over 2,500 miles of waterways.
The Ports of Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky
Approved by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers in January 2015, the Ohio River boundaries of the re-designated port have been expanded from 26 miles to 226.5 miles, including a seven-mile span of the Licking River in Northern Kentucky. The new port, designated the Ports of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky – includes all or part of 10 counties in Kentucky and 5 counties in Ohio. With the new boundaries, the Ports of Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky moves nearly 48 million tons of cargo a year, ranking it 15th among all U.S. ports and the busiest inland port in the US.
The newly designated ports are comprised of 129 active docks and terminals, with 68 on the Ohio side of the Ohio River, 54 along the Kentucky shoreline, and seven along the Licking River.
The Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region is served by three intermodal terminals and three train classification yards, including Norfolk-Southern, CSX and RailAmerica, which process nearly 100 trains per day.
CSX – Class I Railroad
CSX operates approximately 60 trains a day through the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area which include:
- Intermodal trains for container transfers at CSX’s Queensgate Intermodal Terminal
- Intermodal and general-merchandise trains passing through the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region
- Merchandise trains originating or terminating at Queensgate Yard, providing intercity service for the region’s industries
- Local trains, serving local industries
The CSX Queensgate Yard, located west of downtown Cincinnati, is a major railroad facility for the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region, with more than 50 tracks to classify trains located at the site. lt also houses a locomotive repair shop, car shop, the CSX Intermodal Terminal and CSX TransFlo Terminal.
Norfolk Southern – Class I Railroad
Norfolk-Southern has direct service to 22 states and Ontario, with an average of 35-40 trains per day traveling through the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region transportation infrastructure.
Norfolk-Southern operates several railroad transportation facilities, including:
- Gest Street Intermodal Terminal, serving as a terminal and general freight car classification yard
- Sharonville Terminal, serving as a terminal and general freight car classification yard
- Sharon Yard, used for assembling or disassembling trains as well as transferring cars between trains
One of the largest owner/operators of short-line railroads in the U.S., RailAmerica operates two short-line railroads in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region: Indiana and Ohio Railroad (IORY) and Central Railroad of Indiana (CIND), both of which interchange with CSX and Norfolk-Southern. IORY interchanges with CSX, NS, and CIND in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky area, running north to Blue Ash and Columbus, and east to Batavia on the “Oasis line.” The CIND line serves Cincinnati from the west, serving a few river terminals in Cincinnati and running west along the Ohio River, parallel to and north of the CSX rail line. The hub of operations for RailAmerica in the Cincinnati/Northern Kentucky region is the McCullough Yard. Along with switching, the facility also has a locomotive shop on site.
TANK (Public Bus Service)
TANK – Transit Authority of Northern Kentucky provides public transit services to Boone, Campbell, and Kenton Counties as well as downtown Cincinnati. Close to 3 million passengers each year rely on more than 100 TANK buses throughout the region to get them where they need to be. TANK is a part of a healthy Northern Kentucky transportation infrastructure and economy, providing access to employment for thousands of essential workers every day.
Among the many programs TANK offers to businesses and the workforce are:
- Guaranteed Ride Home: A safety net to provide a ride to home, a day care facility, school or the “park and ride” in case of an emergency during the work day when your bus is not running.
- RAMP: The Regional Area Mobility Program is a door-to-door paratransit service allowing disabled citizens who are unable to use TANK’s fixed route bus service to have the same advantages provided to the general public.
- Tax Free Transit Benefits: A program locally offered by TANK and Metro which allows companies to offer employees the valuable benefit of subsidized or lower cost commuting. Participating businesses take advantage of federal tax incentives (offered through Section 132 of the IRS code) to offer employees a subsidized or pre-tax transit benefit.
TANK offers a downtown connection, providing essential transportation infrastructure for access to jobs in downtown Cincinnati, where passengers can also connect to routes operated by SORTA (Southwest Ohio Regional Transit Authority) and Cincinnati Metro, the bus service provided in the City of Cincinnati and surrounding Hamilton County.