BNSF president Matt Rose and Gov. Mark Parkinson will meet at Johnson County Community College Oct. 18 to make announcements regarding the intermodal project in Edgerton.
According to Steve Swartz, Kansas Department of Transportation spokesperson, the decision to host a press conference related to the intermodal in Edgerton in Overland Park, was due in part, to a BNSF training facility on the Johnson County Community College Campus.
“(The intermodal) is out in the middle of nothing,” Swartz said.
David Dillner, Edgerton City Administrator, said he would have preferred that the state visit take place in Edgerton.
“I’ve been told they wanted to do it (at JCCC) because it could accommodate the governor’s travels. I can only have so much power over the governor’s schedule. They tried,” Dillner said.
He acknowledged that the Edgerton officials may get flack for a press conference related to their project being held in Overland Park.
“We had nothing to do with it,” he said. “It’s their press conference. It’s their deal. People shouldn’t be disappointed and mad at Edgerton.”
Swartz said Matt Rose, BNSF’s president, was planning to tour a BNSF training facility located on JCCC campus.
“One BNSF has a training facility there, and two, it’s a good example of public-private partnership that’s happening in this county,” he said. “All I have is what I gave you. These are the two reasons.”
Rep. Mike Kiegerl, who represents Gardner, Edgerton and parts of Spring Hill and Olathe in the state legislature, said he didn’t even know about the press conference until he received an invitation yesterday.
“Why don’t they do it in Topeka?” Kiegerl asked. “That’s about as far away from the site as they’re going now. It doesn’t make much sense. I don’t see that it’s a smart thing, but then, maybe I can’t see beyond the tip of my nose.”
This story may be updated if new information becomes available.
— Danedri Thompson