Jul 1, 2009

Economic Stimulus: Killawarra passing loop upgrade completed

Economic Stimulus: Killawarra Passing Loop Upgrade Completed

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

1 July 2009

The modernisation of the Melbourne-Sydney-Brisbane rail corridor continues unabated with the upgrade of a major passing loop at Killawarra in northern NSW now completed.

This project was brought forward thanks to funding from the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) and the Rudd Labor Government’s Economic Stimulus Package.

Federal Minister for Infrastructure and Transport, Anthony Albanese, congratulated the ARTC for moving so quickly to put its economic stimulus funding to work creating jobs and upgrading the nation’s rail infrastructure.

"As well as supporting jobs and businesses during the current global recession, our economic stimulus package is putting in place the modern rail infrastructure vital to Australia’s long term prosperity," said Mr Albanese.

"The Rudd Labor Government will invest more in rail over the next 12 months than our predecessors did during their 12 years in office."

The upgrade to the Killawarra passing loop involved replacing one of the existing ‘turnouts’ to allow for an entry speed of 50kph as well as some track realignment.

ARTC Chief Executive Officer David Marchant said the $1.4 million upgrade builds on work already completed on the North Coast and will result in increased capacity and shorter transit times between Brisbane, Sydney and Melbourne.

"The ARTC and the Federal Government are pushing forward with the upgrade of the Brisbane-Sydney-Melbourne corridor to make rail more competitive," said Mr Marchant.

"The upgrade of the Killawarra passing loop is another important milestone in the north-south strategy to cut transit times from Melbourne to Sydney by 20 per cent (up to 2 hours 50 minutes) and by almost 20 per cent (3 hours 50 minutes) between Sydney and Brisbane.

"The work currently underway on this vital rail corridor is part of the biggest rail project to be initiated since the track was originally laid more than a century ago.

"The ARTC is pleased the Federal Government has declared its support for the upgrade of Australia’s rail infrastructure through the $1.2 billion investment in announced late last year – an important contribution to the resurgence of rail as a value adding asset to the nation’s transport market."

The ARTC partnered with TEJV to deliver the upgrade.