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CSX worked with customers to locate 107 new plants or expanded facilities — projects worth $2.2 billion in customer investments — on the company's rail network last year, the Class I announced yesterday.The new projects are expected to generate 1,500 new jobs in CSX-served areas, CSX officials said in a news release."Strong customer investment activity in 2015 was driven by downstream energy projects spurred by low oil and gas prices, as well as a significant number of industrial and agricultural projects, which highlights the strength of CSX’s diverse business mix," said Clark Robertson, assistant vice president, regional development.The facilities, when fully operational, are expected to generate more than 143,000 new annual carloads of business for the Class I. In addition to the projects that will be built over the next several years, more than 75 customer facilities located on CSX began operations in 2015.Since 2000, CSX customers have invested more than $42 billion in rail-served facilities. To support rail-oriented industrial development, CSX's Select Site program pre-certifies properties that are suitable for manufacturing use, according to the railroad.Meanwhile, CSX and The Conservation Fund announced recipients for grants under the Grant Program for Transporting Healthy Food. Twelve charitable organizations will receive grants ranging from $4,000 to $10,000 to support and strengthen local transportation and distribution of fresh produce and healthy food to communities in need, CSX officials said in a press release.The organizations are located in Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, New York, Pennsylvania, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Combined, the 12 recipients provide more than 82 million pounds of food to 2.5 million people each year.Now in its second year, the grant program enhances the delivery capabilities of food producers and distributors, which improves the availability of healthy food to communities. The grants will help produce the resources and infrastructure that the organizations need to store, package and distribute the food."We're proud to continue our focus on transportation by working with The Conservation Fund to support local organizations that connect residents with healthy, affordable food," said Tori Kaplan, CSX's assistant vice president of corporate social responsibility.
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