A new report from the Queensland Government’s infrastructure board has “affirmed the need” for the $780 million duplication and upgrade of the North Coast Line on the Sunshine Coast, infrastructure minister Jackie Trad has said.
Building Queensland’s second Infrastructure Pipeline Report, released on January 16, has said the Beerburrum to Nambour rail upgrade is ready for government consideration as part of budget processes.
“The 39-kilometre section of North Coast Line rail track between Beerburrum and Nambour carries a complex mixture of commuter, freight and long distance passenger trains on a single line track with passing loops at stations only,” Building Queensland wrote in its report.
The proposal assessed in the report would be for a duplication of the line between Beerburrum and Landsborough (roughly 20 kilometres), and a number of upgrades to the existing infrastructure between Landsborough and Nambour.
Upgrades would include passing loop extensions, provision of dual platforms at stations connected by lifts and pedestrian bridges, and additional car parking at some stations.
“This update to the Pipeline affirms the need for the Beerburrum to Nambour Rail Upgrade Project, a major priority for the Sunshine Coast community which will provide a more integrated and effective transport system and improve connectivity in South East Queensland,” Trad said.
The report also progressed the Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor project to the detailed business case phase.
Trad said the projects detailed in the report were “integral to delivering jobs and growing productivity across Queensland”.
“The Pipeline allows the Government to make informed decisions about which projects to investigate further and which projects to fund,” the deputy premier explained.
“Building Queensland’s arm’s length expert advice provides confidence that public money is being spent wisely.”
A number of projects from Building Queensland’s first pipeline report have already had funding committed by the state, including Cross River Rail and the European Train Control System for South-East Queensland, Trad said.
“We are committed to following proper process and ensuring infrastructure development and prioritisation is done properly, for the benefit of all Queenslanders.”