RAIL PROJECT: Pacific Intermodal & Industrial Hub's project planned for Casino could commence as early as 2020.
RAIL PROJECT: Pacific Intermodal & Industrial Hub's project planned for Casino could commence as early as 2020.

High-calibre buyers line up for $95 million Casino hub

THREE high-calibre Australian organisations are in negotiations to buy a piece of the action in Casino's rail distribution hub project.

Project manager Liz Marshall said construction of the 360,000sq m Pacific intermodal infrastructure and industrial estate was one step closer to starting at the freight cross-section east of Nammoona rail line, Summerland Way and south of the Reynolds Rd industrial estate.

Ms Marshall said the trio of interested buyers included the Federal Government, a global fund manager and a private enterprise firm.

"The buyers are looking at acquiring the full site and leasing approx 250,000sq m of industrial estate," she said.

"The next stage is to finalise the rail service provider/intermodal operator and at least one anchor tenant, (then the) next stage is council development approval for the intermodal and industrial estate, followed by earthworks and stage one construction of rail line and hardstand."

Ms Marshall said construction could start as early as 2020.

"It is estimated that it will take three to six months from contract settlement to go through council planning and earthworks would then commence," she said.

"It is expected that a project of this size will cost around $95 million, so we need to be working with the type of companies capable of delivering the project.

"There are many elements that need to come together to get a project of this magnitude under construction."

Ms Marshall said the intermodal hub was intended to efficiently transfer freight between transport modes such as road and rail, as well as provide warehousing, cold stores and associated storage facilities.

She said it was anticipated the facility would manage one million tonnes of freight every year.

According to Richmond Valley Council's analysis of the project, it would bring 334 jobs and $30 million in wages and salaries.

Anyone interested in leasing or buying industrial land or considering a change in freight haulage from road to rail can contact Ms Marshall on 0415 460 989 for more information.



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