North Carolina I-42 Manufacturing Corridor

North Carolina's I-42 Manufacturing Corridor Delivering Quality Global Products

Experienced Workforce

  • More than 3,000 employed in plastics in the region
  • Total regional workforce of over 875,000
  • More than 18,000 exiting service members enter the regional workforce annually
  • One of the lowest unionization rates in the U.S.
  • Corridor communities lead the region in Career Readiness Certificates

Educational Attributes

  • Sixteen community and technical colleges in the region
  • 6 Colleges & Universities
  • Customizable workforce development training programs
  • On-the-job training and apprenticeships
  • Post-secondary programs offered in: engineering/industrial management, industrial technology/technician, manufacturing engineering technology, CNC machinist technology, chemical engineering, industrial engineering, and mechanical engineering
  • Early College and Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STEM) Centers throughout the region

Unparalleled Transportation Network


Interstate 42

Runs east and west through the heart of the region connecting major Eastern Region cities including Morehead City, New Bern, and Kinston. Continues west through Goldsboro to the Raleigh-Durham area and is a connector to both I-40 and I-95.

Interstate 40

A major east-west Interstate only 39 miles from the Global TransPark that borders the region on the southwest. I-40 connects the region with Wilmington, Raleigh-Durham, Greensboro and extends west to Barstow, California.

Interstate 95

A major north-south Interstate only 47 miles from the Global TransPark that borders the region on the west. I-95 connects the region with the south to Florida and with the north to Maine. It is considered one of the most important travel routes on the East Coast of the US.

More Major Thoroughfares

Other important highways in the region include US 258, US 17, US 264 and US 117.


North Carolina Global TransPark

The NC GTP is a 2,500-acre, multi-modal industrial park in Kinston serving manufacturing, aerospace, logistics, emergency services and defense contracting industries. It has one of the longest runways east of the Mississippi. In designated Foreign Trade Zone 214.

Coastal Carolina Regional Airport

Located in Craven County, just 3 miles southeast of New Bern. Passenger service offered by American Airlines and Delta Air Lines.

Raleigh-Durham International Airport

Located in Wake County, just 83 miles from the North Carolina I-42 Manufacturing Corridor. Passenger service offered by 14 airlines, with more than 350 daily flights including nonstop international service to London and Paris.


Norfolk Southern

Class-One railroad system with 1,200 miles of track serving the Port of Morehead City and surrounding areas, with a rail network extending throughout North Carolina.


Class-one railroad system with 1,800 miles of track serving the Port of Wilmington and extending throughout North Carolina. Recently invested $47.9 million in its NC network.

North Carolina Railroad Company

State-owned railroad corridor from Morehead City to Charlotte. Operated by Norfolk Southern.


Port of Morehead City

One of the deepest breakbulk and bulk facilities on the U.S. East Coast, 4 miles from the Atlantic Ocean. Within 700 miles of more than 70% of the U.S. industrial base. In designated Foreign Trade Zone 214.

Port of Wilmington

One of the few Southern ports with readily available berths and storage areas for containers and cargo. Offers terminal facilities serving container, bulk, breakbulk, cold storage and ro-ro operations. Equipped with four post-Panamax container cranes and the latest in cargo management technology. In designated Foreign Trade Zone 214.

Military Assets

North Carolina I-42 Manufacturing Corridor is home to MCAS Cherry Point and within two hours of 6 other major military installations in the region: Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base, Fort Bragg, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Pope Army Airfield, MCAS New River, and Military Ocean Terminal at Wilmington.

The military labor force throughout the region totals more than 83,000 people and each year, more than 18,000 service members exit our military installations to join the civilian labor force.

Existing Companies

Contact Us

Thank you for your interest in the North Carolina I-42 Manufacturing Corridor – your convenient point of access to relocate or expand your business. We appreciate the opportunity to have a confidential conversation regarding the assistance we can provide.

Call us at (910) 862-8511, email us, or complete the form below.

Megan Sellers
Director of Marketing & Project Management
North Carolina’s Southeast Regional Economic Development Partnership
707 West Broad Street
Elizabethtown, NC 28337