WITH the development of one of the country’s largest nation building projects on its doorstep, Narrabri Shire Council is looking to plan for the future.
The planning comes as plans for the Inland Rail Project come to light and are designed to maximise the benefits for the shire.
The council has recruited the services of Arcadis Australia Pacific to implement detailed documentation on the benefits and viability of a substantial commercial and industrial estate to ensure it maximises the benefits.
Narrabri shire sayor Cathy Redding said the district is perfectly positioned to take advantage of the upcoming development, and all the opportunities entailed.
“After a competitive tender process, we are thrilled that Arcadis Australia Pacific has been named as the successful contracting firm to carry out a detailed business case and master plan for a proposed Narrabri logistics and industrial hub,” Cr Redding said.
Narrabri Shire Council General Manager Stewart Todd said the development would represent nationally significant infrastructure, with the objectives being to utilise, capitalise and market the site’s strengths.
“Narrabri Shire Council is facilitating the construction of a Logistics and Industrial Hub that has strong regional linkages, leading to national and international markets that is suitably zoned to accommodate a broad range of industry sectors.
“The hub will attract new companies wanting to relocate and grow in Narrabri Shire as well as attracting existing businesses who want to expand and leverage national and international markets.
“Already strategically positioned, council is planning for the imminent nation building Inland Rail infrastructure with the potential of local access to commercial quantities of gas from the nearby proposed Santos Narrabri Gas Project.
“Access to this type of infrastructure and resources will be a substantial point of difference for the area and will allow council to promote the shire to attract logistically critical, energy hungry businesses, thereby growing and diversifying the region.”
Although the proposed Logistics and Industrial Hub is a dedicated area, Mr. Todd said that to be fully functional and maximise its capabilities, the hub was intricately dependent on surrounding infrastructure.
“It is imperative council looks at all surrounding infrastructure that could present pinch points and decrease the fluidity, capacity and throughput of the proposed logistics and industrial hub.
“Surrounding freight and transport based infrastructure inclusive of roads, rail, and bridges have been assessed along with utility infrastructure inclusive of water, electricity, gas, sewer and internet connectivity.”
Funding for the business case and master plan was secured through The Murray Darling Basin regional economic diversification program, a federal program with funds delivered by the NSW state government.