Unimin Corp. has opened a proppant distribution terminal in Navarre, OH, in Stark County to serve oil and natural gas operators in the Utica Shale.

The New Canaan, CT-based company said the Wheeling & Lake Erie Railway will provide its new terminal access to three Class I railroads. The company said the facility is also easily accessible by Interstate 77 and Ohio Route 21, and it will operate 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

“This new footprint in the Utica formation is an important addition to our proppant delivery network,” said Unimin Executive Vice President Louis Mastandrea.

Unimin, which claims to be the world’s largest producer of hydraulic fracturing sands, operates proppant terminals across North America. The company said its Navarre terminal will join six others serving the Marcellus and Utica shales. Those six terminals are in Crafton, Punxsutawney, Taylor and Williamsport, PA; and in Benwood and Clarksburg, WV.

Last year the American Clean Skies Foundation reported that shale development would stimulate the economy and create between 835,000 and 1.6 million jobs by 2017 (see Shale Daily, Nov. 2, 2012). The report found increased demand for sand, which is used as a proppant.

Like Unimin, U.S. Silica Holdings Inc. and S.H. Bell Co. announced plans last October to open a silica sand storage facility at East Liverpool, OH, in Columbiana County, to serve customers in the Marcellus and Utica shales (see Shale Daily, Oct. 11, 2012).