Regional Economic Development Minister Shane Jones was in Palmerston North today to further cement the commitment from the Government towards the KiwiRail multi-transport freight hub.
He also announced the preferred site for the 2.5km hub, between Palmerston North Airport and Bunnythorpe.
"Today is a gold medal day for the future of rail, for Kiwirail, and the business and civic leaders of our Palmerston North community," Jones said.
Palmerston North Mayor Grant Smith said today's announcement was massive for Palmerston North.
"It's the only place in New Zealand where you'll have rail, road and airfreight all connected in the one place," he said.
"This will be arguably New Zealand's biggest distribution and logistics centre once it's completed."
"We can see about eleven parts of the supply chain joining for the first time, on a single site, right across the country," CEO of Kiwirail Greg Miller said. "Internationally this is how supply chains are built. The railway is the only unique mode that unlocks this value - sea, ports and roads don't."
Construction of the freight hub is expected to create over 300 immediate jobs for Palmerston North, with further regional development opportunities expected to flow from that.
- Video footage supplied by Palmerston North City Council.