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News Release


Ruakura Port a game changer

JLL marketing Ruakura inland port and logistics precinct in Hamilton



Long term investment with development potential/new-zealand/en-gb/news/916/long-term-investment-with-development-potentialAUCKLANDLong term investment with development potential
Former Fire Station on high profile corner site/new-zealand/en-gb/news/915/former-fire-station-on-high-profile-corner-siteCHRISTCHURCHFormer Fire Station on high profile corner site


JLL is marketing what will be one of New Zealand's largest inland ports, part of Tainui Group Holding's (TGH) Ruakura development in Hamilton, with 480ha of total development land encompassing logistics, industrial and commercial precincts and anchored by a 30ha inland port.​

The much talked about Ruakura development is about to become a reality. Fulton Hogan is well underway on earthworks for the first six hectares of what will be a major development for the Waikato and the upper North Island. Ruakura has also been recognised as a project of national significance by the New Zealand Government.

Once completed, Ruakura is expected to bring economic, social, environmental and cultural benefits to the Waikato and New Zealand for many years to come.

The 30 ha inland port and dedicated rail siding is under construction. Immediately adjacent to the south of the inland port is 60ha of logistics-zoned land, which allows for warehousing and distribution, container storage, container loading/unloading and biosecurity/customs.

Just 3kms from Hamilton CBD, Ruakura is part of the Golden Triangle, which comprises of Auckland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty. The logistics hub will link into the Waikato Expressway with the East Coast Main Trunk railway dissecting the development. This will allow containers to be moved off roads and onto rail, which links to both the Auckland and Tauranga ports, effectively making it port neutral and giving cargo owners greater supply chain resiliency and choice.

According to the Ministry of Transport, freight is carried by road, rail, air and coastal vessels around New Zealand, with road carrying more than 90% of New Zealand's freight tonnage, with 42% being moved in the Golden Triangle.​


JLL's head of industrial, Sam Smith who is marketing the development says, "This project will be a game changer for the Waikato and potentially for Auckland and other areas of the country by offering genuine scale and efficiency for importers and exporters to move cargoes as sustainably as possible. The introduction of a rail system will allow many of the shipping containers to be transported by rail instead of adding to congestion on our roads.

"Being part of the Golden Triangle makes this development really special as the Golden Triangle accounts for 50% of New Zealand's economic output.

"At capacity it is expected that Ruakura will process 1 million TEU (20ft shipping containers) per year. Ports of Auckland and Tauranga combined currently process approximately 2 million TEU per year, so that's a significant advantage of the site."

TGH has joined forces with LINX Cargo Care Group to develop and operate the new port with LINX and one of its subsidiaries C3 limited, having extensive experience in the industry.

Anthony Jones, Group CEO for LINX Cargo Care Group and Chairman of C3 believes Ruakura will help transform the New Zealand logistics supply chain. "It will offer stable, efficient and cost effective networks for importers and exporters to grow with confidence in the future," he said.

Tainui Group Holdings Chief Executive Chris Joblin says the consistent message from importers and exporters is that they want the freedom to choose between ports and shipping lines, and not necessarily be tied exclusively into either Auckland or Tauranga.

"This 'port neutrality' is a key part of the Ruakura offer as we configure the rail and road connections North, South and East," Mr Joblin says.

As well as providing a range of services Ruakura to the region's exporters and importers, Ruakura has the potential to support 6,000 -12,000 jobs within the precinct once fully-built.

Hamilton presents an ideal location due to its global connections, proximity to international ports, Auckland International Airport, and the number of manufacturing, health, education and growing freight and logistics companies that are based there. It is also less expensive to do business when compared to Auckland, and has access to a skilled workforce with a growing youth population. The city is forecast to experience population growth of 74,600 residents (50% growth) between 2013 and 2043, which would see the city reach a total population of 224,800.

With land in Hamilton being less expensive than Auckland and the fact that the city has a low natural hazard risk, Ruakura Port will tick a lot of boxes for potential tenants.

The inland port site will be gated and secure with border security also in place. The lower cost of living in Hamilton is also more attractive to the workforce in a competitive employment market.

Says Smith, "From having limited location options, all of a sudden logistics companies are being given the opportunity to reap the rewards of having top class premises in a rail and road friendly location, where they will spend less on leasing their premises and be able to attract labour due to the lower cost of living in Hamilton. In addition, they will also be located on a site where retail and green space will be readily available, something they wouldn't normally see at traditional port sites. Those who sign on early will also have the ability to locate and build their ideal operation on the site. It is for these reasons that Ruakura is expected to attract a lot of attention from prospective tenants.

"When you combine location, scale, access and forward thinking, Ruakura will be New Zealand's leading industrial and logistics development. It is a carefully planned, multi decade development, which will create a thriving business and lifestyle hub, bringing economic, social, environmental and cultural benefits for the Waikato and the rest of the country."

With stage 1 of Ruakura underway, the Ruakura Port is scheduled to open in the first half of 2019. ​

To find out more, view the website​ here​.