Mossend International Railfreight Park has officially launched its expanded Railhead project after planning permission was awarded in October.
MIRP provides access to intermodal transport facilities, operating as an “inland port”, handling the transfer of cargo from rail onto truck.
It is hoped this will put Scotland at the forefront of a Europe-wide logistics network.
The family business, which has been delivering logistics for over 140 years, marked the milestone with a team of Clydesdale horses hauling a traditional horse lorry across the newly completed M8 bridge, which links directly to the MIRP site.
This reflected the origins of the business which started using horse-drawn carriages as a coal merchant and carrier in Glasgow.
The company, which has worked in rail transport for 85 years, invited key partners and businesses from across the UK to join them at a reception where they celebrated the launch of the project and highlighted ambitions to become a leading provider of low carbon logistics for the UK putting Scotland at the forefront of a Europe-wide logistics network.
David Stirling of PD Stirling Ltd, which owns MIRP, said; “This is an exciting day for us as we launch Mossend International Railfreight Park.
“It is a significant milestone for low carbon logistics for the UK, creating more opportunities for freight, both into and out of the very heart of Scotland.
“We will continue to work closely with North Lanarkshire Council, our local communities and the Scottish Government to ensure that we deliver a truly modern, strategic rail facility in central Scotland which connects the country to the UK and Europe.
“This project will also transform the local community in Lanarkshire, bringing jobs, local investment and a sustainable green legacy for Bellshill, by incorporating a network of community greenspace.
“Crucially, this will help Scotland lead the world in providing a lower cost, efficient and more sustainable alternative, to long haul road transport.”
Keith Brown, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, added: “The Mossend International Railfreight Park marks an exciting chapter for the delivery of sustainable transport in central Scotland.
“Not only will MIRP play an important role developing Central Scotland’s freight infrastructure, it will also support sustainable economic growth within the region and help to deliver our ambitious plans for the future of rail and freight.”
It is anticipated the site will be operational by the end of 2020.