Road and rail should work to­gether – Ki­wiRail boss

New Zealand Truck & Driver - - News -

THE ES­TAB­LISH­MENT BY KI­WIRAIL OF A NEW in­ter-modal freight hub near Palmerston North will mean that “rail and road can work to­gether to meet the freight de­mand in cen­tral New Zealand – while grow­ing the Manawatu-Whanganui re­gion,” says Ki­wiRail boss Todd Moyle.

Ki­wiRail will “work with key cus­tomers on ma­jor in­fra­struc­ture re­quire­ments to en­cour­age freight busi­nesses into the area,” says Moyle – Ki­wiRail’s act­ing chief ex­ec­u­tive.

‚e Gov­ern­ment’s has com­mit­ted a $40m Pro­vin­cial Growth Fund in­vest­ment in the freight hub and Moyle says that it will ready the re­gion “for the com­ing freight growth.

“Palmerston North is al­ready a crit­i­cal freight dis­tri­bu­tion point, with goods com­ing through from the up­per North Is­land, Taranaki, Hawke’s Bay and Welling­ton, and freight vol­umes ex­pected to in­crease signiŒcantly in the com­ing decades.

“To best man­age this growth, it’s cru­cial that we make the most of mul­ti­ple forms of trans­port. With an air­port nearby and NZTA plan­ning a freight ring road and a re­place­ment road for the Manawatu Gorge, there is a need for a dis­tri­bu­tion zone near the city. Rail is a vi­tal part of that de­vel­op­ment.”

‚e PGF fund­ing will see Ki­wiRail pur­chase land for the rail/road freight hub in a lo­ca­tion eas­ily ac­cessed by dis­tri­bu­tion com­pa­nies and other busi­nesses.

Al­though Moyle is in­clu­sive of road freight’s role in the hub’s plan­ning and op­er­a­tion, he also says: “‚e Gov­ern­ment recog­nises the im­por­tant role rail plays in driv­ing sus­tain­able and in­clu­sive growth in NZ. Ev­ery tonne of freight car­ried by rail has 66% fewer car­bon emis­sions than heavy road freight.

“Getting more freight on rail also re­duces road con­ges­tion and road main­te­nance costs and im­proves road safety.”

Once the new hub is es­tab­lished Ki­wiRail will, over time, move its op­er­a­tions from the present Palmerston North Freight Yard, es­tab­lished 54 years ago…and now sur­rounded by ur­ban de­vel­op­ment.


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