Inland Rail Review endorses Melbourne Intermodal Terminals

6 April 2023

  • Beveridge and Truganina supported as Melbourne’s Inland Rail Intermodal Precincts
  • Inland Rail to prioritise Beveridge to Parkes route with National Intermodal to work with NSW Government on the feasibility of an upgraded Parkes intermodal precinct
  • Engagement with Industry to continue seeking interest in terminal use and land development opportunities
  • National Intermodal to work with the Commonwealth and Victorian Governments to progress Beveridge and Truganina

National Intermodal is pleased to support the Australian Government’s endorsement of the recommendation made by the Dr Kerry Schott AO-led review into Inland Rail, that two new independent intermodal terminals connecting to Inland Rail will be delivered in Melbourne, one at Beveridge in Melbourne’s north and the other at Truganina in Melbourne’s west.

These terminals will provide critical support to the Federal Government’s long-term freight strategy to move more freight from road to rail delivering a more resilient, efficient and sustainable Australian supply chain.

National Intermodal further supports the Schott Review’s recommendation that consideration be given to an independent intermodal terminal at Parkes given the potential advantage of utilising Inland Rail for a Beveridge – Parkes – Perth highly efficient double stacked rail freight route. 

Beveridge Intermodal Precinct

The Federal Government-owned National Intermodal Corporation, working with the Victorian Government, will lead the delivery and operation of the state-of-the-art intermodal precinct at Beveridge.  The site when developed, will have the ability to offer the efficiency of double-stacked services for 1,800-metre freight trains to Perth (via Parkes) as well as Brisbane (upon completion of Inland Rail).  The Beveridge terminal will enhance competition in the rail freight sector by ensuring independent, open access arrangements for all industry participants and offer the unique ability to provide freight services across Melbourne and through to Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

The development of this precinct will create thousands of jobs both during construction and when the precinct is operational.  National Intermodal looks forward to working with the Mitchell and Whittlesea Councils and local businesses to prioritise local employment opportunities. 

Planning is underway for an initial terminal to be available to offer interstate rail services by 2025, with full terminal and precinct warehouse operations targeted for 2028/29.  The precinct will see upgrades to key road corridors including the Cameron’s Lane/Hume Highway intersection. It will ensure direct and efficient connections to reduce traffic congestion and support greater connectivity for one of Melbourne’s fastest growing corridors in Melbourne’s north. 

Mr Baulderstone, CEO of National Intermodal said: “The Beveridge terminal will greatly enhance the resilience of our national supply chain, creating a critical piece of the Inland Rail Melbourne to Brisbane journey via Parkes, but also an immediate competitive alternative route for rail freight between Melbourne and Perth.” 

“The recent MOU entered into with Aurizon to become Beveridge’s foundation customer demonstrates increasing industry demand for new interstate terminal capacity, accelerating the construction of new sustainable, state-of-the-art intermodal precincts to service Inland Rail as well as existing freight corridors.”

“Significant interest has also been expressed in the Beveridge Intermodal Precinct by others in the industry.  We will now continue this engagement to ensure Beveridge delivers a modern, efficient intermodal precinct that will help to revitalise the rail freight sector, bringing resilience and lower costs to Australian businesses and families.”

“The greater the number of rail operators and logistic service providers that can be encouraged to use rail as their first choice for interstate freight transport, the greater the flow on benefits to the Australian community.  Growing both rail’s share of the transport freight challenge, while also increasing competition in the rail sector, will ensure the cost savings, increased resilience, lower emissions and improved standard of living via increased safety and less road congestion, will flow directly to consumers.”

Mr Baulderstone said: “Having a dedicated rail freight precinct in Melbourne’s north will mean less trucks on roads, more jobs on the doorstep of Melbourne’s growing north and improved competitiveness of Australia’s supply chain”. 

“We look forward to working closely with the Mitchell Shire and Whittlesea Councils to unlock job opportunities in construction and operations for the growing communities in Melbourne’s north who will be integral to the delivery of this precinct;” Mr Baulderstone said.   

Western Intermodal Freight Terminal

The Australian and Victorian Governments will continue to jointly develop a business case for both an interstate freight precinct at Truganina and for its connection to the national interstate rail network via the proposed Outer Metropolitan Ring Road southern corridor. 

National Intermodal looks forward to supporting the Governments in the delivery of the Western Terminal which will be an essential part of rail being able to offer and deliver the most compelling option for rail freight across Australia. 

Parkes Intermodal Terminal

With the Schott Review identifying the potential value inherent in connecting the Inland Rail double stacked service offering direct from Melbourne to Perth via Parkes, National Intermodal will work with the NSW Government to investigate potential intermodal investments that further support Parkes as the critical swing point between Inland Rail and western freight flows to Perth. 

Mr Baulderstone said, “The Schott Review has identified the potential for Inland Rail to lower costs and increase the resilience of the critical east – west rail freight network in additional to the benefits offered to the east coast of Australia. 

It is an exciting prospect with the opportunity to also develop a strong regional intermodal precinct at Parkes with flow on benefits for the local community and businesses.”

Ms Erin Flaherty, Chair of National Intermodal, welcomed the Government’s timely response to the Schott Review and the Government’s acceptance of all 19 recommendations.  Ms Flaherty said: “We appreciate Dr Schott’s work in undertaking the Review of such an important project.  Her findings and recommendations are the wake up call needed to ensure that this critical infrastructure project can be successfully delivered.”

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Julia Lefort

Julia Lefort

Director Communications