DPW Australia opens inland hub

Better connected: The facility will connect Somerton directly by rail shuttle to the Port of Melbourne Photo: Port of Melbourne Better connected: The facility will connect Somerton directly by rail shuttle to the Port of Melbourne Photo: Port of Melbourne

DP World Australia is to operate Austrak’s intermodal freight hub at Somerton 23km north of the Port of Melbourne.

Brian Gillespie, chief commercial officer for DP World Australia, said the new facility at Somerton would have the capacity to handle 200,000 teu per annum.

“As a full customs bonded port for both import and export containers, Somerton can be offered as a port of origin and destination by shipping companies,” Mr Gillespie said. “We expect capacity will grow to 400,000 teu over time.”

A rail shuttle service running between Somerton and Port of Melbourne will provide a rapid turn-around service for imports and regional rail exports which will increase freight transport options for local importers and regional exporters — by handling longer length regional train services which currently struggle to get access to inner city rail terminals.

Mr Gillespie added: “With the planned closure of Coode Road next year, Somerton will have rail shuttle access to an on-dock rail connection, which significantly increases the effective capacity of our West Swanson container terminal.”

The facility will connect Somerton directly by rail shuttle to the Port of Melbourne and as such it’s exoected to become a regional freight hub and an extension of the container terminal at the port.

In addition, it’s expected to remove around 100,000 plus truck movements from the roads of inner city Melbourne each year.

The Somerton Rail Port is planned to start operation in December 2016.

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