This strategic project was procured for a joint venture between STVA, the Automotive Freight arm of the French National Railway (SNCF) and a major UK based Automotive Logistics company called Walon. Following the opening of the Channel Tunnel they could see their clients need for opening up a rail route from the centre of the UK to the European rail routes. On completion it was FIAT who were the first to unload a shipment from their plant in Italy.

The Project

As our first fully funded, turnkey project we engaged the services of a US based company, Transdevelopment, who are experts in the field of planning and building Automotive Distribution Centres. We went on to form a UK company with them and developed most of the UK automotive terminals including Halewood, Cowley and Castle Bromwich amongst others.

The project involved a major site search to find low cost land of 60-100 acres, centrally located with a rail connection. Having shortlisted 3 main sites, the site of a former steel works was acquired with an Agreement to lease in phase to the Automotive Joint Venture.

In addition to installing a bespoke design of sidings particular to the needs of efficient, damage free loading and unloading of new cars, the tarmac parking to the storage areas were designed to minimise thickness in the car parking areas, but increased between roadways to allows for the intense wear. This reduced costs considerably. The transporter loading pad was carefully designed to minimise loading and unloading times and maximise the opportunity for 'design in' health and safety.

It was a fully funded scheme in the order of £7m and was completed on time and on budget.