Coda Group, a leading freight management business, is on track to create a Coda freight hub at Rolleston, near Christchurch.
Coda Chief Executive Scott Brownlee said Coda is committed to bringing innovative logistics solutions to the Canterbury region and expect to finalise plans for the new hub and cross-docking facility within the next few months.
“We have a number of customers in the South Island and now is the right time to extend our supply chain capabilities in the region. The Rolleston location offers excellent connections to road and rail and is near many of our existing customers. These factors enable us to better optimise cargo flows and offer real benefits to both our customers and the region. This requirement has become even more relevant with the recent earthquake impacting land-based supply lines into the South Island,” he said.
The Coda hub will consist of a 20,000sqm food-grade warehouse providing export packing, import devanning, cross-docking and domestic product handling and distribution. The facility will be co-located with MetroBox, the container storage and handling depot that is 37.5% owned by Coda.
Coda brings significant local experience and scale to the proposed development, with its current South Island network coordinating over 100 truck movements a day during peak months, moving over 1400 metric tonnes of cargo on rail every day and coordinating up to 30 per cent of the freight which moves across Lyttelton Port.
“The Coda freight hub will unlock a number of efficiencies, including the potential for cargo to be transported by rail directly to and from Lyttelton Port, reducing number of truck movements through Tunnel Road.
"With local importers and manufacturers building facilities in the South-West of Christchurch, direct rail flows between Lyttelton Port and Rolleston will significantly reduce truck congestion across the City,” he said.
Brownlee also points out that while Lyttelton Port will remain a key destination for much of Coda’s export and import cargo, it is important for Canterbury businesses to have multiple port choices.
"The Coda hub will be port neutral and have access to both Lyttelton Port and PrimePort Timaru. This will provide cargo owners with a choice of ports and offer business continuity options in the event of significant network disruptions," he said.
The Coda intermodal freight hub will provide a full logistics solution including transport, product warehousing, cross-dock facilities, container loading and devanning, container storage and hire. The site will also support an existing coastal shipping service that is currently moving up to 500 TEU per week to and from the South Island.
Brownlee said the Coda freight hub will cater for future growth in the region and support the development of a viable freight precinct at Rolleston.
“We share the same view of many local cargo owners and logistics providers, in that we see Rolleston as the key to unlocking future freight efficiencies in the South Island,” he said.
Coda, launched in May 2015, is focused on using scale to create more efficient transport networks. Coda’s business model brings together import, export and domestic supply chains by creating multi-user and multi-modal freight hubs that are strategically located with rail links to key ports. Coda coordinates rail and road connections to and from these hubs, linking them to import, export and domestic cargo owners.
Coda recently opened one of New Zealand’s largest fully intermodal freight hubs at Savill Drive in South Auckland, providing rail solutions between Auckland, Palmerston North and both upper North Island ports.
Brownlee said Coda’s success in the North Island has been made possible by working collaboratively with customers, logistics partners and infrastructure providers.
“We have been able to use the scale of our network and our significant freight volumes to challenge the status-quo, think differently and implement our strategic intermodal freight network. We now want to bring this approach to support our South Island customers,” he said.