Simta argues its corner on Moorebank

The Sydney Intermodal Terminal Alliance (Simta) fronts criticism on its Moorebank intermodal plan

Simta argues its corner on Moorebank
Simta argues its corner on Moorebank

By Rob Mckay| March 27, 2012

The Sydney Intermodal Terminal Alliance (Simta) has sought to
front the criticism on its Moorebank intermodal plan from the office of federal Transport Minister Anthony Albanese.

The move comes as NSW Premier Barry O’Farrell, already the source of considerable frustration to Albanese over other Sydney transport infrastructure projects, appears to have sought clarification from Prime Minister Julia Gillard several times about the issue.

For Simta, its plans and Canberra’s concept of a separate, bigger terminal can be complementary but Albanese appears concerned for future outcomes if Simta, in which Qube Logistics is a major partner, predominates.

"We are proposing to build an open access port shuttle and interstate rail terminal at no cost to taxpayers," a Simta spokesman says.

"The investment by the private sector would be approximately $150 million in the first stage with a total investment, including land costs of $1 billion."

The alliance believed that the port shuttle can be operational by early 2014 and the interstate terminal can be built as demand required over the following years on the Simta site.

"To allow shuttle operations to commence by 2014, we are continuing negotiations with Defence to use a small portion of underutilised land on the site which they currently rent from Simta," the spokesman says.

"The Federal Government proposal would require approximately $1 billion of taxpayers money to be spent before the private sector would then be asked to spend a further billion dollars developing the old School of Military Engineering site.

"The Government proposal could not commence operations before 2018.

"This means the federal government proposal would cost $1bn of taxpayer’s money and would delay construction of rail infrastructure by four years while severely worsening traffic congestion on the M5.

"We are firmly of the view that a joint approach should be taken to planning the precinct and remain willing to work with the Commonwealth to achieve the earliest and most cost efficient outcome."

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