The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has shortlisted contractors to construct the Botany Rail Duplication and Cabramatta Loop projects.
For the Botany Rail Duplication project, CPB Contractors, Laing O’Rouke, and John Holland are shortlisted. For the Cabramatta Loop Project, ARTC has shortlisted Downer EDI, Fulton Hogan, and John Holland. The formal tender process will be undertaken in 2020 for both projects.
ARTC CEO and managing director, John Fullerton, noted that these projects will grow the potential of freight in Sydney.
“These major projects aim to improve rail capacity, flexibility and reliability for freight rail customers, encouraging more freight to shift from road to rail, and we are getting on with delivering these massive improvements.”
Both projects aim to increase rail capacity and service reliability to and from Port Botany, while increasing capacity across the Sydney freight network. According to NSW Ports’ 30-year Master Plan, 80 per cent of containers that arrive in Port Botany are delivered to sites closer than 40km away. Increasing freight rail frequency will allow for these containers to be moved to industrial and logistics sites in Western and South Western Sydney.
“Improving freight performance at Port Botany is critical for the economic growth and prosperity of Sydney, NSW and Australia with the amount of container freight handled by the Port set to significantly increase by 77 per cent to 25.5 million tonnes by 2036,” said Fullerton.
“These two landmark projects will strike the balance between rail and road by duplicating the remaining single freight rail track section of the Botany Line between Mascot and Botany and constructing a new passing loop on the Southern Sydney Freight Line (SSFL) between Cabramatta Station and Warwick Farm Station to allow for freight trains up to 1300 metres in length.
“Once completed, the Cabramatta Loop Project will allow freight trains travelling in either direction along the Southern Sydney Freight Line to pass each other and provide additional rail freight capacity for the network.”
Work on the Sydney freight network will also increase rail’s share of freight, and alleviate congestion on the Sydney road network, highlighted Fullerton.
“Each freight train can take up to 54 trucks worth of freight off the road, tackling congestion and improving the everyday commute in Sydney.”