Consultants are being sought to start plans for the long touted Katherine Logistics and Agribusiness Hub.
The NT Government has promised $30 million for the long discussed freight hub is to be located adjacent to the Katherine Railway Terminal.
The first plans sought are to design a plan for a passenger terminal access and car park at the yet to be established hub.
These first tender documents reveal plans for a second and permanent passenger terminal to be located on a separate 1280 metre rail loop on the north side of the line.
"The existing passenger terminal building and rail interface arrangement was intended as a temporary arrangement at the time of the rail line being constructed around 2002, with an expectation of upgrading the facility after 10 years," tender documents state.
"Landscaping to the terminal, parking area and access road surrounds that creates a uniquely Katherine first impression, improves the aesthetics and consistent with this facility being a significant tourist entry point to Katherine."
Ghan passenger trains are currently operating twice a week with an expectation this may be increased to three trains per week in the future.
The proposed new passenger terminal and associated access road, carpark and rail platform arrangements on the new rail line loop are intended solely for use by these passenger operations.
The NT Government has committed to develop regional Katherine's potential as a major horticulture and agricultural site; and also as a transport hub to strengthen the town's role as a transport cross ways for Queensland and Western Australia commodities.
The hub is proposed to be located on a portion of the Manbulloo Pastoral Lease adjacent to the Katherine Railway Terminal, with access to the Victoria Highway and the future Katherine heavy vehicle bypass.
To make provision for the increase in freight volumes the "hub" development is expected to generate through the railway freight terminal, the passenger terminal is to be relocated onto a separate rail loop to the northern side of the rail line.
More reading: Defence rules out rail link to Tindal.
Currently the passenger trains use the same rail loop as for the freight operations with passenger trains extending into the freight operations area.
The infrastructure is to make provision for a terminal of similar capacity to the existing passenger terminal on the south side.
The tender is to close on May 19.
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