New rail hub planned for Rangitīkei

  • Hon Shane Jones

The Government will help fund the construction of a rail hub in Rangitīkei dedicated to handling and transporting logs from around the lower North Island, Infrastructure Minister Shane Jones has announced.

The facility, to be built at the key freight hub of Marton, will receive $9.1 million from the $3 billion set aside in the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund.

Rangitīkei District Council has estimated that this build, which will include a debarker facility, will create up to 83 jobs. When it’s up and running it will enable more efficient log transportation in the lower North Island, as well as creating 22 fulltime jobs,” Shane Jones said.

“Marton is central to significant forests in Rangitīkei, Manawatū and Horowhenua regions that are mature and will continue to produce mature trees and increased volumes for the next 15 years. It is also a key service town for agriculture in the area, making it a good location for a freight hub.

“This rail hub will not only attract more commercial developments to the immediate area, it will also take freight trucks off the roads,” Shane Jones said.

“Parts of this region are deprived, with few options for economic development. This construction project will benefit the building and associated industries, boosting the local economy and keeping people in jobs. It also provides potential for the region to   diversify and boost the local economy.”

Note to editors:

All approvals are in principle and subject to contract negotiations. Investment values are also subject to change.

The funding announced today is part of the $3 billion infrastructure package in the COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund, announced by Finance Minister Grant Robertson and Shane Jones on July 1. The fund is expected to deliver more than 20,000 jobs across New Zealand and unlock investment with a project value of more than $5 billion.