Below Rail Infrastructure, Engineering, Passenger Rail

North East Line Upgrade awarded

The Australian Rail Track Corporation has appointed a main works contractor for its North East Rail Line Upgrade project in Victoria.

ARTC chief executive John Fullerton announced on December 9 John Holland will deliver the multi-million-dollar main works package for the line between Melbourne and Albury.

John Holland was among three parties shortlisted for the $235 million contract in June.

Work will include ballast depth improvements along the entire rail corridor, mudhole removal and track resurfacing, drainage upgrades, and around 100 level crossing and rail bridge upgrades.

Fullerton said the work would push the North East line one step closer to improved reliability, smoother journeys and reduced delays.

“Over the previous months we have been following a rigorous competitive tender process,” he said. “We are thrilled to award the contract to John Holland and are confident that their extensive experience delivering large scale rail infrastructure projects will ensure the best outcomes for the project.”

John Holland’s executive general manager for rail Steve Butcher said the team was thrilled to have won the contract.

“John Holland’s Rail Infrastructure Services team is well equipped to deliver this important project that will reinvigorate a large part of regional Victoria,” Butcher said.

“We understand the upgrades are a key priority for those living in north east Victoria and look forward to delivering these improvements and the benefits they will bring to the local community, businesses and economy.”

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The ARTC said significant early works have already been completed on the line this year, including a significant scope of work during a recent 60-hour works shutdown. Further targeted works are planned to help address some current V/Line services performance issues.

“We know the reliability of North East line services is a real and on-going concern for passengers, and we continue to work with the Victorian transport agencies to find ways of improving the track condition ahead of the commencement of the upgrade’s main works,” Fullerton said.

“Recent works undertaken in September enabled the removal of six temporary speed restrictions (TSRs). Since then we have procured a high-speed tamper which is stabled at Benalla.

“A further 11 TSRs have been removed and 60 kilometres of track tamped. We plan to continue targeted resurfacing works over the coming months as well as ballasting and mudhole removal.”