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2014-2015: Barnstable County Freight Study

Freight truck, tractor trailer, large truck» Barnstable County Freight Study

Barnstable County Freight Study
(February 13, 2015


In February 2015, the Cape Cod Commission published the results of the Barnstable County Freight Study, the first attempt by the Cape Cod Metropolitan Planning Organization to bring a comprehensive assessment of issues facing freight haulers to, from, and within Barnstable County (Cape Cod).

The information in the study will help to identify the methods used to transport freight and provide recommendations to improve freight flexibility, speed efficiency, fuel efficiency, and safety. The study provides details regarding existing infrastructure, for each movement type (trucking, rail, and waterborne).

Truck freight issues are focused on on-time reliability and routing options. The Cape’s arterial road and bridge network forms the backbone of freight routing – with significant constraints at the Cape Cod Canal area. Rail infrastructure is far more limited – with its own unique constraints at the rail bridge over the Cape Cod Canal. Waterborne freight is currently very limited, but the many ports and harbors of the Cape provide opportunities unique to the area.

The study features data from a survey presented to local freight businesses. Respondents indicated their particular freight use and needs and support for investments to improve freight infrastructure.

In order continue to make progress in improving freight safety and reliability, the following strategies are offered:

  • identify “critical” freight commodities
  • encourage specific types of freight transportation
  • make infrastructure improvements for the freight industry
  • update truck routes for the MassDOT Road Inventory
  • To reduce impact to freight traffic, restructure Bourne and Sagamore bridge repair contracts (night work or 24-hour shift)
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