Page Loading

Grangemouth Investment Zone: freight flow analysis


The study examined freight flows in the Grangemouth Investment Zone (GIZ). The objective was to understand the current and future freight flows to and from the Grangemouth area as well as the current and future constraints to potential growth. This report sets out the findings of this study, highlighting trends, forecasts, and constraints and opportunities. It also sets out an Action Plan for the GIZ up to 2025.


The methodology consisted of an analysis of freight flows and facilities, freight forecasts and consultation with key stakeholders, including a range of industry bodies and individual organisations with a business interest in the GIZ.


The study found that the GIZ is well-located for national distribution serving the whole of Scotland. Policy at both a national and local level is highly supportive of the development of the GIZ as a freight transport and logistics hub, particularly when it can both support economic growth and reduce carbon emissions. However, two main threats to the development of the GIZ as a freight transport and logistics hub were identified: the lack of rail network capacity; and potential strong competition from the Tees Valley, with its major petro-chemical industry cluster and deeper water port, allied to an extensive network of feeder container services and rail links to and from the Central Belt. In terms of freight flows, a total of 14.3 million tonnes of road freight is transported to and from the GIZ, with 68% outbound and 32% inbound. Of which, 22% of outbound and 30% of inbound HGVs are making trips within the Falkirk area, with a further 70% of outbound and 62% of inbound flows to/from the rest of Scotland. Only 4% of outbound and 8% of inbound flows are to the rest of Britain. There are an estimated 610,000 tonnes of rail freight from the GIZ and 280,000 tonnes to the GIZ, with an estimated modal split for rail of 6% in both directions. Baseline forecasts up to 2025 are for growth in container traffic through the port of 24.9%; non-unitised traffics through the port of 24.8%; HGV flows of 9.4%; and rail freight flows of 5.6%. It was also forecast that around 31,000 m2 of new build warehousing would be needed up to 2025. The Action Plan sets out the public sector measures and private sector investments that would allow the GIZ to achieve its potential over the next 10 years. Total modelled annual benefits from these measures are £11.65 million of user benefits and £1.80 million of non-user benefits. The present value in 2017 of the benefits over 60 years is some £336 million.


No specific recommendations were made.

Author MDS Transmodal limited
Published Year 2017
Report Type Research
  • Sectors
    Chemical sciences
  • Enterprise
    Support to existing/growth businesses
  • Internationalisation