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Marton Rail Hub

The Marton Rail Hub project was announced in April 2020 as a partnership between Rangitīkei District Council, Te Rūnanga O Ngā Wairiki Ngāti Apa, Infrastructure Reference Group and Rangitīkei Forestry Holdings.

Marton Rail Hub

The rail hub, which is set to be based on the outskirts of Marton, will set up Rangitīkei and neighbouring districts as a key logistical hub for the forestry industry across the Lower North Island. It will include a debarker facility, and attract further forestry businesses to the site.

The project will benefit the community, economy, the forestry sector and iwi, providing job opportunities during construction and when operational, as well as give a boost to the region’s economy and the opportunity to diversify the district’s business landscape.

The Marton Rail Hub will also allow more logging trucks to come off the roads and on to rail, benefitting local forestry owners with a reduction in road transportation costs, and improving safety for road users.

The project is supported by a $9.1 million Government investment administered by the Provincial Development Unit (PDU). This investment forms part of the $3 billion infrastructure portion set aside in the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. Funds from Rangitīkei Forestry Holdings and Rangitīkei District Council will also be used to support the project.

The land proposed to accommodate the Marton Rail Hub underwent a district plan change in 2020 to rezone the land from rural to industrial. The zone change has been appealed to the Environment Court, and Council is working with the appellants and associated parties to understand and mitigate their concerns.

Council is working closely with partners on the project, including iwi and hapū to ensure the project upholds the principles and articles of Te Tiriti o Waitangi and honours the cultural and historical significance of the whenua.

You can find updates about the Marton Rail Hub on this page as the project progresses.

For more information contact the Senior Project Manager: Jess McIlroy



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News Stories

Marton Rail Hub on track as planning gets under way


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Frequent Asked Questions

The land proposed to accommodate the Marton Rail Hub underwent a district plan change in 2020 to rezone the land from rural to industrial. An appeal to the zone change was lodged with the Environment Court, and Council is working with the appellants and interested parties to understand and mitigate their concerns. This is being done through the preparation of a Comprehensive Development Plan for the site by Council’s consultants, WSP, and will include detailed information on the effects of the development such as noise, air quality and traffic movements. The consultancy team will engage with the appellants and interested parties as the Comprehensive Development Plan progresses to provide updates and seek feedback. It is envisaged that a memorandum will be provided to the Environment Court in April 2021 updating the Court on progress made on the appeal.

The development of the Marton Rail Hub was announced in April 2020 as a partnership between Rangitīkei District Council, Te Rūnanga O Ngā Wairiki Ngāti Apa, the Government’s Infrastructure Reference Group and Rangitīkei Forestry Holdings.

The rail hub, which is set to be based on the outskirts of Marton, will set up the Rangitīkei region as a key logistical hub for the forestry industry across the Lower North Island, allowing handling and transportation of logs by rail to North Island ports. The site will include a debarking facility, and offer space to other relevant industrial businesses.

The Marton Rail Hub is set to be built on land earmarked off Makirikiri Rd, which is parallel to the existing rail network between malting company Malteurop and State Highway 1 in Marton.

An access road will be part of the construction.

Marton is central to significant forests in the 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 construction project will expand economic development, and benefit the building and associated industries, boosting the local economy and keeping people in jobs. It also provides potential for the region to diversify.

Marton was built as the rail junction in the North Island to service our agricultural sector; the new rail hub gives the Rangitīkei district the opportunity to start growing again. The idea of the rail hub has been more than three years in the making and the Government has recognised the opportunity this brings to the district. Not only does this recognise the importance of funding key infrastructure in small regional towns, but it will also provide jobs in our local community.

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 at least 22 full-time jobs.

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

The project is estimated to cost about $14.5 million.

The project is supported by a $9.1 million Government investment administered by the Provincial Development Unit (PDU). This investment forms part of the $3 billion infrastructure portion set aside in the Government’s COVID-19 Response and Recovery Fund. Funds from Rangitīkei Forestry Holdings and Rangitīkei District Council will also be used to support the project.
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It is expected that construction will begin, subject to planning and processes, in mid-2021. It is hoped that some operations on site will begin before the end of 2021. This is subject to change, as all parties work through planning for this project.

Extensive planning and assessments are underway to ensure minimal impact on the environment, and to residents nearby. As this is currently an empty parcel of land, there will be no removal or demolition of buildings that needs to take place and it is expected that the construction will work around natural features, such as streams.

Considerations for factors such as noise and dust will also be made and factored into all planning.

Rangitīkei District Council is working in close partnership with Te Rūnanga O Ngā Wairiki Ngāti Apa throughout this project. The Council and all stakeholders are committed to honouring the iwi partnership and working collaboratively to enhance collective opportunities within the Rangitīkei district.