Why do we need the West Midlands Interchange?
A strategic rail freight interchange is something that has been long identified as essential for the future prosperity of the West Midlands region. The West Midlands’ strong manufacturing and logistics industrial base is growing and there is a shortage of suitable quality development land for large scale rail-served logistics warehousing. Without fast, reliable transport links the region may not be able to take full advantage of the global business and investment opportunities predicted in the future.
The Government’s policy is to encourage the shift of goods from road to rail to help reduce carbon emissions and provide economic benefits. It believes a network of strategic rail freight interchanges across the UK will help realise its vision. Rail freight produces 70% less CO2 than road freight, up to 15 times less NOX emissions and nearly 10 times less particulates, as well as de-congestion benefits.
Where do you propose to build it?
Following extensive research with a number of regional partners over many years, we have selected a site in the region of 250 hectares next to the West Coast Main Line, south west of where the A5 meets the M6 at junction 12.
Why this location?
This area was identified as one of the best locations in the West Midlands for an SRFI as early as 2007. This site is one of very few in the UK with the right road and rail access to allow the bigger sized 9’ 6” containers to be moved on the rail network to the rail terminal and is considered the best place for the West Midlands Interchange because:
- It is close to a major rail route, major trunk roads and the business and consumer markets it needs to serve;
- It has the space needed for large structures, freight access and locations for businesses to develop; and,
- It meets specific pressing local needs for rail-served facilities and warehousing across the West Midlands, particularly Birmingham, the northern M6 corridor, Staffordshire and parts of Warwickshire.
Who is behind the scheme?
The West Midlands Interchange project is being developed by Four Ashes Limited – a consortium led by Kilbride Holdings, a company specialising in rail infrastructure to serve business and industry. Kilbride Holdings is working in partnership with privately owned international property group, Grosvenor Group, which is providing funding, and Piers Monckton, the majority landowner.
The partners of Four Ashes Limited are committed to delivering a rail served development which will bring significant sustainable social and economic benefits to South Staffordshire, the Black Country and the wider region, through responsible design and by taking into account community interests and environmental considerations.