Wagga Wagga back on hub track with Genesee & Wyoming


Riverina Intermodal Freight and Logistics project could put rail firm in crucial logistical position

Wagga Wagga back on hub track with Genesee & Wyoming
An artist’s impression of the planned the RiFL Hub.

 

Rail operator Genesee & Wyoming Australia (GWA) sees its next selection for a new Wagga Wagga intermodal development as giving it exposure to the planned Inland Rail project.

Wagga Wagga Council has tapped G&W as its new preferred proponent for the Riverina Intermodal Freight and Logistics (RiFL) Hub after its predecessor, Traxion, entered administration in April.

According to the Council, the terms of an exclusivity agreement will now be negotiated exclusively, with both parties entering into a period of disclosure and negotiation to determine whether the RiFL Hub component of the development is commercially viable.

If so, the contractual and legal terms of the contracts to deliver the RiFL Hub will form part of the negotiations and be considered further by Council in the future.

Both stages of the RiFL Hub program – Bomen enabling roads and RiFL Hub facilitation works, along with rail infrastructure and terminals – will be considered further by Council before construction begins.

"This is a key economic opportunity for the Riverina and we look forward to working closely in partnership with the Council to build a robust case to bring its intermodal objectives to fruition," GWA managing director Greg Pauline says.

"This is a key economic opportunity for the Riverina and we look forward to working closely in partnership with the Council to build a robust case to bring its intermodal objectives to fruition.

"Importantly, Wagga Wagga has been included as part of the strategic route for the now federal and state government-backed Inland Rail project and this will further assist the business case for the RiFL Hub."

The strategic position is likely to be boosted by G&W’s recent purchase of rival rail concern Freightliner Australia and its business focused on central New South Wales coal, cotton and agricultural products.

The Traxion failure was a major embarrassment to the Council, which had gained federal backing for the strategically located development from federal infrastructure minister Warren Truss, and led to claims of a lack due diligence that were denied.

But it has returned with strong potential replacement.

"The RiFL Hub has always been about Council partnering with all levels of government and the private sector to provide regional business access to a competitive freight solution that will open up commercial opportunities to the nation and the world," Wagga Wagga mayor Rod Kendall says.

"Council took positive steps last night to enable the planning and construction of new road infrastructure at Bomen, which in the future, will eliminate the level rail crossing at Dampier Street and improve truck productivity.

"Essentially, the road infrastructure is proposed to be Stage One of the RiFL Hub Program, and we are hopeful of securing NSW Government support towards this critical infrastructure.

"Stage Two will happen concurrently and involves Genesee & Wyoming Australia.

"We look forward to working with Genesee & Wyoming Australia in exploring the RiFL Hub with a view of commencing development when terms have been agreed and subject to viability."

 

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