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The Southern Palace Joint Venture Consortium has won a 20-year concession to design, finance, build and operate a major intermodal terminal serving Gauteng province.
Announcing the ‘historic public and private sector partnership’ on June 5, Transnet said the R2∙5bn terminal forming part of the Gauteng Integrated Transport Master Plan is expected to be fully operational in 2022-23.
Southern Palace is the lead concessionaire for a consortium that includes Ferrovie dello Stato Italiane as technical partner and Makoya as logistics and marketing partner. Other members of the consortium are Aecom and Italferr. The master partner and landowner is the Tambo Springs Development Co which is overseeing the Tambo Springs Logistics Gateway project. The City of Ekurhuleni will provide ‘major bulk services’ for the development.
The 607 ha terminal will be located south of Johannesburg on Transnet’s Natal Corridor main line linking Gauteng with the port of Durban and will ‘ease the strain’ on the existing City Deep inland container terminal. It will have two intermodal platforms equipped with six gantry cranes.
While the terminal will have good access to the national road network and to OR Tambo International Airport, Transnet noted that ‘a development of such magnitude will ease road traffic by diverting road cargo to rail networks linked to the country’s sea ports’.
Container movements to and from Gauteng are expected to grow from 3 million TEUs to 4 million TEUs by 2021, Transnet said, noting that the scheme is ‘aligned to the government’s Strategic Infrastructure Project 2 which centres around the Durban – Free State – Gauteng Corridor’.
The terminal is seen as a ‘catalytic investment’ that will stimulate back-of-terminal property developments that include processing, manufacturing and warehousing. The construction work will generate around 81 000 jobs, and as many as 110 000 permanent jobs will be created in the transport, manufacturing and logistics fields.
Transnet’s Chief Business Development Officer Gert De Beer said that ‘the Tambo Springs inland terminal has been on the government’s plans for a number of years now. Witnessing it come to fruition is indeed a historical moment for many South Africans. Once completed, the inland terminal will completely change the face of Gauteng.’
This article first appeared on www.railwaygazette.com
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