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LAND FERRY™ OPENS SEED ROUND TO EARLY INVESTORS

Map of Land Ferry - Phase 1

Map of Land Ferry - Phase 1

NEW INTERMODAL FREIGHT SYSTEM PROMISES FASTER AND CLEANER MIDDLE-MILE TRANSPORT WHILE HELPING TO EASE DRIVER SHORTAGE

Land Ferry could shift 10 – 20% of pass-through trucks on Interstate 40 and Interstate 80 from road to rail.”
— Gary Schneider - Co-Founder
TUCSON, ARIZONA, UNITED STATES, November 10, 2021 /EINPresswire.com/ -- On the wings of COP-26 and passage of the monumental Infrastructure bill, Land Ferry™ announces the opening of a seed round for impact investors interested in early backing of an innovative intermodal initiative.

Intermodal freight in a new way

Land Ferry is a new intermodal freight system that combines the long-distance efficiency of rail with the door-to-door service of trucks in a new way. Land Ferry creates efficiencies by maintaining driver-tractor-trailer-load pairings during rail transport. Rigs boarding Land Ferry are traveling 1,300+ miles. across one of two major freight corridors that parallel Interstate 40 and Interstate 80. Drivers arrive at the Land Ferry destination port rested and ready to roll. When operational Land Ferry will aggregate thousands of individual cross-country trucks 24x7x365 at its land ports – shifting these rigs onto specially-designed railcars. BNSF and UPRR hook and haul regularly scheduled unit trains non-stop across their respective corridors. Modal transition is seamless. Rigs roll up, roll on and roll off. Simple. Like a ferry.

According Gary Schneider, third-generation railroader and Acting CEO, Land Ferry has the potential to transform freight movement across the western and midwestern U.S. “It provides a new service that decreases transit time 25-35% for tractor-trailer rigs. These efficiency gains create more operator hours, essentially more drivers, by increasing their turns per month. For trucks traveling the middle miles via Land Ferry, GHG emissions will be reduced over 60%. Furthermore, Land Ferry lessens pavement wear, decreases congestion and saves lives. Land Ferry is wealth creation and elegant in its simplicity.”
Too good to be true?

Is this too good to be true? Not as Schneider and his team see it. “Land Ferry is one of those rare private sector plays that co-streams public benefits. It’s all about enabling diversion. Land Ferry will shift trucks from roads to rail by exceeding service equivalence and having fluid modal transition by keeping the operator-rig-load troika together. Land Ferry also integrates well with drop and pick operations and will, in the future, ferry autonomous trucks. Land Ferry will offer an intermodal option for independent owner-operators and smaller firms who own much of the fleet and haul much of the freight but have no such service. Land Ferry will also serve mega shippers, brokers and mid-size firms. Most transit slots will be pre-sold with some held open for last-minute, high-priority, high-paying customers. Land Ferry will provide intermodal service to for freight, such as large equipment and machinery, that cannot be put into a container – about 30% of freight on the highway. Depending on the exigency, for some freight Land Ferry will be cheaper in terms of total cost than driving. Land Ferry will generate significant carbon credits and goodwill. Affiliation with Land Ferry supports socially responsible shipping. Shippers and retailers can capture these green contributions and push the messaging through to consumers via branding. Lastly, over the first five years of operations, Land Ferry will bring billions of dollars of new business to the railroads – business that they are not currently capturing to everyone’s detriment.”
Origins of Land Ferry

Schneider’s boutique transportation engineering firm shaped the Land Ferry concept 15 years ago while studying the impacts of increasing truck traffic on Interstate 80 for the Wyoming Department of Transportation (WYDOT) and the USDOT. WYDOT’s concern, like other DOTs, was the ever-increasing I-80 truck traffic which was leading to ever-increasing road wear, emissions, congestion, and crashes as well as increasing pressure to keep Interstate 80 open in adverse weather.

Schneider’s firm interviewed thousands of truckers, shippers and other players in the long-haul Interstate 80 freight ecosystem. Not surprisingly the study found that to a large degree, states along the corridor serve as land bridges for pass-through freight. The majority of trucks traversing the corridor have neither an origin or a destination in these states. In many sections of Interstate 80, trucks outnumber cars. The study provided insight into the types of freight being transported, trucking densities and distances along the corridor and receptivity towards a land ferry-like service.

This led Schneider’s firm to evaluate whether an intermodal system in the EU could be adopted in the US. Says Schneider, “Land Ferry is modeled after a similar system operating around the Alps. That system was conceived for a different use case – to reduce congestion and to improve safety by diverting trucks from mountain roads to rail. It has been in service for almost 20 years. By and large operators love it.”

In 2006, Schneider’s firm worked with UPRR planners to evaluate the feasibility of servicing Land Ferry. Unfortunately, that was the time of Peak Coal. UPRR was operating near capacity due to record coal shipments. UPRR concluded that they could not provide the level of service required to make Land Ferry feasible.

Schneider surmised that Interstate 40 could be similarly characterized so his firm reached out to BNSF. But again, the time was not ideal for a big deal. BNSF had just been acquired by Berkshire Hathaway. Given the business opportunity and the chance to create legacy public good, a direct request was made to Mr. Buffet asking BNSF to work with our team to evaluate the Interstate 40 corridor. Our request was politely rejected.

Fast forward to 2021. The time for Land Ferry is dawning. Coal shipments are way down. Railroads have implemented train control technology allowing more density and higher speeds on their networks. Schneider believes this opens a lane for Land Ferry, and Land Ferry is getting ready to roll…
Time is now but an uphill climb

With the right coalition, Land Ferry could shift 10 – 20% of pass-through trucks on much of Interstate 40 and Interstate 80 from road to rail. Corridor states and states where Land Ferry ports are located will realize innumerable benefits at little or no cost. Benefits include:

• Reducing wear on I-40 and I-80 pavement, saving several billion dollars per year; funds that can be used by states on their other highways.

• Saving fuel and reducing GHG emissions owing to rail’s 3:1 fuel efficiency over trucks.

• Lessening congestion on I-40 and I-80 and providing resiliency when these routes experience inclement weather.

• Enabling operators to make more trips per month due to the 25-30% time savings.

• Lowering truck-car crashes, property damage, injuries and fatalities.

Land Ferry, delivers these benefits to the public, corridor states and the Nation. Benefits multiply if Land Ferry expands to the Interstate 10 / UPRR corridor or other targeted routes.

Schneider says the time is now. Land Ferry’s timeline is to be operational in 24 months. But Land Ferry has a big hill to climb. For this, the team is assembling a strong mix of partners.

In the private sector Land Ferry is building a diverse partnership that includes one or two mega shippers such as UPS, Amazon and Walmart, an international engineering firm, a railcar manufacturer, an infrastructure financier, and a transportation/tech company.

At the national level, Land Ferry has reached out to USDOT Secretary Buttigieg for support. Schneider claims that Land Ferry could be helped by the new infrastructure legislation. “Land Ferry will be a huge climate win for the Nation. And it positively impacts the core missions of several USDOT Administrations. Fifteen years ago, while studying this concept for WYDOT and USDOT, the White House was gracious enough to host a meeting for our team and eight agencies with an interest in our initiative. Given the crosscutting nature and interstate scope of Land Ferry, we found this forum extremely beneficial.” Schneider’s team is still waiting for a response from the Secretary’s Office.

For states, Land Ferry has also been meeting with Departments of Transportation (DOTs) along the two corridors. Land Ferry will greatly benefit these states at little or no cost. “Obviously, states like Land Ferry. It supports many of their strategic initiatives. States know well the impact of an ever-increasing number of trucks but there is very little they can do to address this beyond spending more and more of their budgets on Interstate reconstruction and expansion to support their land bridges. But, as was shown in Wyoming and what other DOTs will confirm, these expenditures come at the expense of other state roads.”

Baby unicorn expectant, midwives wanted

As for their Seed round, Schneider says Land Ferry is pulling together a dream team who share their vision. “Land Ferry will be impactful in reducing GHG emissions. It can leverage green investing trends, carbon credits, and green branding for shippers and retailers who use our service. Shifting trucks off highways engenders bankable goodwill. Land Ferry is always well-received by all who learn of it. For our shipping partner(s), an element of the deal could be strategic by including a dedicated number of future Land Ferry slots. Best of all, Land Ferry is a real multi-billion-dollar opportunity. It creates real wealth and enormous societal benefits – no offense to all those newly minted unicorns who have an app for this and an app for that. Land Ferry is tangible, low-tech, low-investment, low-risk. Maybe a real unicorn. It’s needed by our Nation, now. It’s planet-saving, time-saving, road-saving and life-saving.”

Schneider wraps up with this, “As part of due diligence I’ll invite would-be partners to spend a day with me driving down a stretch of western Interstate 40 or 80 to see all those trucks and to listen to our story. It would be illuminating.”

About Land Ferry™

Land Ferry North LLC (Cheyenne, WY) and Land Ferry South LLC (Tucson, AZ) are separate entities, collectively referred to as Land Ferry. Land Ferry is a new intermodal system that combines the long-distance efficiency of rail with the door-to-door service of trucks in a new way.

For More Information

For more information contact Gary Schneider at (970) 420-1656 or info@land-ferry.com.

- End –

Gary Schneider
Land Ferry South LLC
+1 970-420-1656
gary.schneider@land-ferry.com

Introduction to Land Ferry