AusRAIL, Market Sectors

QR duplicates Blackwater section below budget

<p>QR said it was now halfway through a $335m upgrade of the Blackwater rail system, which feeds the port of Gladstone about 55m tonnes of coal each year.</p> <p>It comes as QR said it had completed a 15.5-km section between Bluff and Blackwater $2m under budget and a month ahead of schedule.</p> <p>It is one of several duplications along the main artery that should boost capacity to 83mtpa by 2011.</p> <p>The work also includes the installation of overhead electric wires and signaling. </p> <p>Acting QR chief Stephen Cantwell said the upgrade was part of $700m of capital work being undertaken.</p> <p>&#8220With the demand for Queensland coal predicted to continue to increase, this duplication of track on the Blackwater system will significantly enhance capacity and reduce congestion by reducing queuing times,&#8221 Mr Cantwell said. </p> <p>There were 18 ships waiting to load at the port of Gladstone this morning (Monday, July 16), a figure that has dropped to as low as 13 in the last two months but has largely remained steady. </p> <p>Central Queensland Ports Authority (CQPA) has capacity for about 70m tonnes of coal exports each year.</p> <br />