1,100 ha in Beveridge, Victoria secured for an intermodal freight terminal

June 26, 2023

Industry News

Words by Lucas Meyer, The Property Tribune

  • National Intermodal completes acquisition of 1,100 hectares of land in Beveridge
  • The site will be developed into an intermodal terminal for Melbourne’s Inland Rail
  • Terminal will help grow Melbourne’s northern growth corridor and improve rail freight sector

The Australian Government-owned, National Intermodal, has completed its acquisition of the Beveridge site.

The company acquired the 1,100 hectares with the intent of developing it into an intermodal terminal for Melbourne’s Inland Rail and will become known as the Beveridge Intermodal Freight Terminal (BIFT).

The site was determined to be a priority location in a recent Inland Rail review due to its favourable positioning, allowing for connections to rail and road. The site was also chosen due to its immediate ability to support freight trains, which have double stacked containers and are around 1,800 metres long.

The 2022-23 budget set aside up to $3.1 billion for the $3.6 billion Melbourne Intermodal Terminal Package. The package aims to deliver two intermodal terminals, with connecting infrastructure. Of that $3.6 billion package, $1.62 billion has been designated for BIFT and $280 million for upgrades to road connections.

National Intermodal is currently finalising the concept designs for BIFT and aims to have a preliminary terminal open in 2025. With the full terminal and capacity for 500,000 twenty-foot Equivalent Units (TEU) to be operational in 2028-2029.

BIFT will also incorporate a 500 hectare environmental buffer to ensure that future occupiers of the Beveridge prescient and surrounding areas are better protected and have enhanced amenity offerings.

Terminal set to revitalise rail freight sector

The development of BIFT will assist in further growth for Melbourne’s northern growth corridor, and improve the current rail freight sector; BIFT will help to connect large freight trains between Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Perth.

This connection will enhance competition in the rail freight sector, with the terminal ensuring independent and open access arrangements to any industry participants.

“The development of a modern intermodal precinct in Melbourne’s north will continue the revitalisation of the rail freight sector. This project, together with Inland Rail, will help transform our supply chain and importantly, lower costs for Australian businesses and families,” said CEO of National Intermodal, James Baulderstone.

The site was previously optioned by Qube (ASX: QUB) before being acquired by National Intermodal. Qube currently has an option to acquire up to 200 hectares of the developable land; the option expires in late February 2024.

“We’re pleased that National Intermodal has exercised its option to acquire the land necessary for the future development of a new intermodal facility with associated warehousing at Beveridge. This will be vital both to the development of Inland Rail and to the creation of better linkages to national and global markets for Australia’s industries and regions” said Paul Digney, Qube Managing Director.