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Commissioners support Wilmington rail realignment

Columbus County commissioners Monday signed off on and endorsed a proposal by the City of Wilmington and the counties of New Hanover, Pender and Brunswick to move the last stretch of rail lines leading to the state port in Wilmington from within the Wilmington city limits to the west side of the Cape Fear River.

Longtime former Wilmington city council member Laura Padgett, who now serves as coordinator of the Wilmington Rail Realignment Project, was not on the agenda for Monday’s meeting, but made her proposal during public comments. She said that moving the rail route so the last few miles into the port aren’t in the city will alleviate severe congestion.

The county was not asked to make a financial commitment to the project but will appoint a representative in the future to a board made up of representatives of Wilmington and the other three counties that would be affected.

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