Rail and Seaports


Over 1,400 miles of track comprise Maine’s rail network, which connects to major rail carriers in the United States and Canada, including Canadian Pacific, Canadian National, CSX, and Norfolk Southern rail systems.

The Maine Department of Transportation’s Industrial Rail Access Program (IRAP) provides a maximum of 50 percent of estimated project costs to certain public and private investments in rail infrastructure.

The Downeaster Passenger Rail Service, operated by AMTRAK, offers regularly scheduled train service between Portland and Boston. The sleek passenger train operates within a 114-mile corridor between Boston and Portland and includes stops in Haverhill, MA; Exeter, Durham, and Dover, New Hampshire; and Wells, Saco and in the summer, Old Orchard Beach, Maine. Expansion is planned for Freeport, Brunswick, and Lewiston/Auburn. The train runs four-five trips a day between Boston and Portland, 365 days a year.


The Port of Portland

Portland is the largest tonnage seaport in New England as well as a major seaport along the east coast of the United States. It is also the second largest oil port on the east coast, processing close to 150 million barrels of oil in 2007, a majority of which  passes through the Portland-Montreal Pipe Line.  Portland is also the largest foreign inbound transit tonnage port in the United States.

Portland enjoys one of the deepest natural harbors on the east coast with highly navigable, multiple approaches and a superior geographic location that cuts the round-trip North Atlantic transit time by one full day. Multiple port facilities and specialty terminals can readily accommodate container, general cargo, bulk, and oil cargo.

In addition, Portland is also one of  the largest ports in North America for the growing cruise ship industry, which is is rapidly making Maine one of its premier ports of call. It is not uncommon to find several large crusie ships in port at any given time during the height of the season which lasts from early summer through the spectacular Maine foliage season.