The Confluence of America, the Confluence of Business

Geographic Position

Located at the confluence of the two largest rivers in North America, the Ohio and the Mississippi, Cairo sits atop the geographic center of the USA's major shipping and distribution routes. With abundant access to rail, interstate, and two of the busiest waterways in the nation, the untapped potential of this position could be an invaluable asset for commercial development.

The Mississippi River lies to the west of the city and separates Illinois from Missouri. The river loops around to the south and converges with the Ohio River at Fort Defiance Park, the site of a strategic Civil War fort where troops were trained and supplies were routed to support them. The Ohio River to the east of Cairo separates Illinois from Kentucky.  Cairo is currently home to Alexander County Regional Port District, a state chartered and certified site for the movement and transport of goods through US inland waterways.

In addition to the proximity to rivers that border Illinois, three highways provide easy access to the north, south, east, and west. A class 1 rail line operated by Canadian National comes in from the north and exits east to Kentucky across the Ohio. Cairo Regional Airport lies just outside of town on the north.

Approximately 80% of all inland barge traffic in the
United States passes by Cairo, Illinois every year.

Area Infrastructure

The underpinnings of industry are in place and awaiting full capacity, full potential.

• Major roadways (I-57, I-55, 1-24, Rt 51, Rt 3 and Rt 60) with three river crossings. Upgrades are currently in planning.

• Canadian National operates class 1 rail lines with a bridge that crosses the Ohio River into Kentucky. There is opportunity for the re-commissioning of currently non-functioning local access lines.

• Bordered on the East, South, and West by the two largest rivers in North America (Mississippi and Ohio Rivers)

• Alexander County Regional Port District is already in operation. State chartered and certified for the movement of goods.

• Increasing opportunities for new construction and historic renovation

• Existing gas, water, electric, and telecommunications in many available properties

• Cairo Regional Airport located just north of I-57

Of the Inland Waterways, Alexander - Cairo Port District is the farthest north of any warm water ports.



Alexander - Cairo Port District

PO Box 591
1100 Commercial Avenue
Cairo, Illinois 62914

Phone: 618-500-6821


© 2020 by Alexander Cairo Port District.