Members of the public are being invited to have their say on the proposed flood modelling and structural design of the Inland Rail construction.
A panel of experts is being called on by the federal and Queensland governments to provide public consultation on the draft Terms of Reference for the Australian Rail Track Corporation’s (ARTC) freight rail line that will cross the Condamine floodplain in Queensland.
Michael McCormack, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development said the Independent Panel of Experts will include hydrologists and engineer experts.
The independent expert panel chosen to review ARTC’s flood modelling and design will include experts with international experience and will operate at arm’s length from ARTC.
McCormack said the public consultation will reaffirm Inland Rail’s commitment to an engineering solution.
“We understand the legitimate concerns landholders have about constructing infrastructure where our farmers and communities have experienced floods – which is why the Independent Panel of Experts is important to provide public safety assurance for Inland Rail,” the Deputy Prime Minister said.
McCormack said extensive work has already been undertaken by the ARTC and by Australian experts to develop and test flood modelling that will guide the structural design of Inland Rail as it crosses flood prone areas.
Mathias Cormann, Finance Minister, said the government was committed to working with affected communities and experts.
“This expert panel will provide reassurance around Inland Rail’s hydrology and engineering solutions, ensuring that Queenslanders can benefit from 7,200 jobs and from a boost of more than $7 billion which Inland Rail will deliver to the Queensland economy,” he said.
Mark Bailey, Queensland Minister for Transport and Main Roads said the Condamine floodplain is a complex and dynamic part of Queensland.
“The engineering solution for Inland Rail to cross the Condamine must address this, taking into account local hydraulic and hydrology patterns and local knowledge,” he said.
“The expert panel will review ARTC’s flood modelling and proposed designs against the best practice in a floodplain environment and provide advice to the Commonwealth, the State and the ARTC.”
The draft Terms of Reference is available via email for stakeholders.