Patrick and PrixCar win Webb Dock bid

Patrick AutoCare and PrixCar will develop and operate vehicle pre-delivery inspection services at the Port of Melbourne

Patrick and PrixCar win Webb Dock bid
The new Webb Dock inspection facilities are due to begin operating by mid-2015.

Patrick AutoCare and PrixCar will develop and operate vehicle pre-delivery inspection services at the Port of Melbourne’s Webb Dock.

The Victorian Government yesterday announced the companies as the successful bidders for the new facilities being constructed as part of the $1.6 billion Port Capacity Project.

Patrick AutoCare will develop a 12 hectare site, while PrixCar will build a new 4ha facility, both of which are expected to be operational by mid-2015.

Minister for Ports David Hodgett says the new inspection facilities will cater for Victoria’s automotive trade and operate alongside a new automotive terminal. The operator for the new automotive terminal is expected to be announced in mid-2014.

"The new pre-delivery inspection hub means that vehicles are prepared for delivery to dealers on the dock, right next to where they are unloaded off the ships," Hodgett says.

"Currently a small volume of pre-delivery services are carried out within the port precinct, but around one third of the cars handled at the port are trucked across the West Gate Bridge for pre-delivery servicing before being trucked back across the bridge for delivery to dealers. 

"This new facility consolidates the import-export service in one location, increasing efficiency and reducing unnecessary truck shuttles around our freeway network."

Hodgett says Patrick AutoCare and PrixCar already account for almost 80 per cent of Victoria’s total pre-delivery inspection volume.

Last year the Port of Melbourne handled more than 356,000 vehicles, including around 80,000 locally made cars which were exported to markets around the globe, many to the Middle East. 

The Victorian Transport Association (VTA) has welcomed the announcement of Patrick AutoCare and PrixCar as the successful bidders.

Both firms are members of the VTA, and VTA CEO Neil Chambers says he looks forward to liasing with the companies to ensure pre-delivery arrangements run smoothly once the facilities are operational by mid-2015.

"Car carriers will be mixed with container skel trucks, tautliners, rigid PUD vehicles, livestock crates and the occasional over-dimensional load in the precinct, all vying for access to the M1 (Westgate) corridor for metropolitan and regional deliveries, and to arterial roads for access to near port locations," Chambers says.

"While the new on-dock PDI facilities will dramatically reduce the number of interim transport moves that vehicles need to make before final delivery to dealerships and customers, there will still be a dramatic number of heavy vehicle movements to and from Webb Dock every day."

Chambers says the VTA has worked closely with the State Government, the Port of Melbourne Corporation and other stakeholders to consider the impact of increased truck traffic to and from Webb Dock that will come about once the automotive terminal and inspection facilities are running.

"We need to work with the Government and its agencies to ensure that the road infrastructure and associated traffic management arrangements can cope with these movements without causing undue delays at added cost, particularly during peak periods," he says.

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