Patrick Stevedores’ plan to close operations at the Port of Hastings, if it proceeds, will negate a key line of reasoning for the East West Link.
The Baillieu government and associated lobby groups, supported by the Edington Report, have argued that the link is needed for the transportation of freight between the Port of Hastings and Port Melbourne. With only sporadic usage it will become increasingly preposterous for the government to argue the economic benefits of such a link.
The argument for rail freight is also strengthened by this decision was in part precipitated by BlueScope Steel’s decision to use rail rather than ship to transport steel.
This will not be the end of the East West Link proposal, after all the Feasibility Drilling/Studies on Alexandra Parade and in Royal Park is currently still in process, but it is another serious blow to pro-road arguments and protagonists.
THE Baillieu government’s plan for a massive expansion of the Port of Hastings has been dealt a blow with the port operator confirming it will close operations there.
Patrick Stevedores has told staff that its Hastings operations will be wound back from November, meaning the port will be used commercially only sporadically, mainly to handle petroleum and gas. The move follows a decision earlier this year by BlueScope Steel to transport its steel from Port Kembla in NSW by rail rather than ship.
In a memo to staff obtained by The Age, Patrick confirms its stevedoring operations at Hastings, located in Western Port, will end.