A new rail freight terminal in Victoria’s north is delivering jobs for locals and exporting Victorian hay to the booming Asian market.
Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne officially opened the QUBE Ultima Intermodal Terminal today, which will remove 4,000 truck trips annually from Victorian roads.
Hay from local farms is compressed and loaded into containers at the northern Victorian facility. The containers are then put on a train and taken to the Port of Melbourne for export to Asia.
Their operations have been helped by a recent $23 million upgrade of the Manangatang freight line, thanks to the Andrews Labor Government.
The upgrade saw sleepers replaced over a 90km section of the line in the Ultima region by V/Line. Track formation was also improved with new ballast which will improve the ride quality for trains.
Two trains a week currently service the Ultima facility, but it’s expected that will expand to three or four trains a week.
QUBE, Pentarch Agricultural and Pickering Transport invested $3.65 million in the facility which has delivered a jobs boost for the small Mallee town.
Pentarch markets Australian oaten hay, cottonseed and other grain internationally and the new facility will generate millions of dollars in new exports to Japan, South Korea, Taiwan and China.
As noted by Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne
“This new facility is creating jobs for the local community and is helping to get more freight onto rail – removing around 4,000 truck trips every year from Victorian roads.”
“The $23 million upgrade of the Manangatang freight line is making it safer and more efficient for trains to carry hay and grain to port.”
As noted by Member for Northern Victoria Mark Gepp
“The new Ultima Intermodal Terminal is a great asset for the local community – creating jobs and also moving more freight onto rail.”
As noted by QUBE Managing Director Maurice James
“QUBE is proud to be delivering jobs for the Mallee and taking trucks off the road through our significant $3.65 million joint venture investment in the Ultima Intermodal Terminal.
“Already two trains a week are using this terminal to provide integrated rail solutions to the intermodal and bulk markets, and we hope to expand this when more local products become available later this summer.”