Friday 25th Sep, 2020

Inland Rail to generate $22.5bn

Warren Truss
Photo: Jim Wilson

The Federal Government has released the delivery study for the Inland Rail project, after it was handed in by John Anderson’s Implementation Group earlier this month.

Anderson recently delivered the report to deputy prime minister and minister for infrastructure and regional development Warren Truss.

The report outlines a 10-year construction plan to complete the 1700km project – including 600km of new track, and puts the cost at $10 billion.

Accompanying the plan is a detailed business case, developed by the Australian Rail Track Corporation.

Initially, the Inland Rail will provide for 1800 metre long trains carrying containers stacked two high and, later, 3600 metre long trains.

The direct Brisbane to Melbourne link will reduce freight-travel-distance between Melbourne and Brisbane by 200km, and between Brisbane and Perth by 500 km.

“This Report and Business Case provides the information needed to consider how best to build the Inland Rail network to meet the freight challenge of the coming decades – expected to treble along the eastern seaboard to 2030,” Truss said, adding that the plan indicates that the Inland Rail will generate economic benefits of about $22.5bn.

Michael Kilgariff, managing director of the Australian Logistics Council, welcomed the delivery of the report.

“Inland rail is critical to Australia’s freight future given the expectations of the growth in the freight task,” Kilgariff said.

“ALC, along with industry, strongly supports the project and we eagerly encourage Government’s continued commitment to the project to ensure its long awaited delivery.”

Shadow minister for transport and infrastructure Anthony Albanese said the government should take action soon on the project.

“Infrastructure minister Warren Truss should stop talking about the long-awaited Inland Rail Link between Brisbane and Melbourne and start building,” Albanese said.

“Mr Truss has talked endlessly about Inland Rail but done nothing. It is time to get on with the job.”

This article originally appeared on Rail Express affiliate, Lloyd’s List Australia. Read the original here.

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