Rail giant takes Toowoomba Regional Council to court

THE company building a $235 million rail hub in Charlton has taken Toowoomba Regional Council to court as part of a dispute over infrastructure.

Freight Terminals Trust, the company behind master-planned logistics, warehousing and industrial estate InterLinkSQ, is facing off against council lawyers in the Planning and Environment Court over who should foot the bill for roads.

The company is appealing a decision made on April 11 by council planning officers to reject an application to convert infrastructure to "trunk infrastructure".

The conversion would have meant the company was able to claim reimbursement under the council's Priority Infrastructure Plan for infrastructure on site at Nass and Draper Rds, Charlton.

The council collects infrastructure charges from developers to pay for trunk infrastructure and pools it together to pay for sewers, stormwater drains and roads required for projects.

Planning and development committee chairman Cr Chris Tait the council would respond to the application before the court, filed on May 12, and proceed according to legal advice.

InterLinkSQ chief executive officer Michelle Reynolds said in a statement the company was working with the council through the appeals process as set out under the Sustainable Planning Act.

"We are not asking TRC to pay for the infrastructure needed to support the entire northern section of the Toowoomba Enterprise Hub. We are working through a process to acknowledge the extent of infrastructure that is regarded as trunk infrastructure."

She said as the application was before the court she was unable to comment further.

The Toowoomba Enterprise Hub includes Wellcamp airport, Wellcamp Business Park, Witmack Industrial Park, Charlton Logistics Park and InterLinkSQ.

Developers from the Charlton area have already contributed money in the form of infrastructure charges which will go towards paying for trunk infrastructure.

Ratepayers will not contribute towards paying for the infrastructure which InterLinkSQ is seeking to convert to "trunk".

InterLinkSQ is seeking for the conversion to be allowed and for legal costs from the council.

Toowoomba-based Wagners which owns nearby projects is also taking legal action against the council over infrastructure charges.

What is InterLinkSQ

  • InterLinkSQ is an intermodal transport and logistics centre and developing inland port, strategically located in the Toowoomba Enterprise Hub, 13km west of Toowoomba to maximise transportation and supply chain cost efficiencies
  • Situated as a major centre for freight moving between metropolitan centres including Brisbane, Melbourne, Sydney, Perth and Darwin as well as via the Port of Brisbane and Brisbane West Wellcamp Airport
  • Offers modal choice through access to key road, rail, sea and air links
  • Project is expected to contribute $110m to the Queensland economy through the construction phase and a further $1.075bn in the operational phase, 80 per cent of which is expected to be generated in the Toowoomba Local Government Area


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