Maldon to Dombarton - taking the next step?
The Federal Government says work will begin soon on getting the Maldon to Dombarton Rail Link project ‘shovel ready’ ahead of possible inclusion in its next round of road and rail infrastructure funding.
Image: Mark Carter
Federal Infrastructure and Transport Minister Anthony Albanese says approval has been given for the release of the previously announced $25.5 million needed to complete the planning and detailed design work, with these pre-construction activities to be undertaken by Transport for NSW.
“In line with the commitment given by the Prime Minister late last year, we are determined to progress this infrastructure project and cement the Illawarra’s status as one of our nation’s most important industrial powerhouses,” said Mr Albanese.
Preconstruction activities are expected to be completed within the next two years. The project involves laying 35 kilometres of standard gauge track connecting Port Kembla directly to the Main North South Line via Dombarton. It would also include two passing loops, bridges over the Nepean and Cordeaux Rivers and one of Australia’s longest tunnels.
Cunningham MP Sharon Bird said as well as completing the detailed planning and design work, the additional funding will also be used to finalise a realistic construction timetable and cost estimate for the project.
Work on the rail link originally started in 1983, but was abandoned in 1988. An initial feasibility study carried out for the Federal Government in 2009 estimated the cost of finishing the link at $550 million. It found that the project had the potential to become a catalyst for additional trade and commerce in the Illawarra region and the ability to avoid or forestall other transport congestion issues on both road and rail.
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