The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has commenced the procurement process for two more Inland Rail contracts.
Applicants are invited to submit Expressions of Interest (EOIs) for a construction contract on the Narrabri to North Star section of Inland Rail. The other EOI is for the supply and delivery of rail sleepers program-wide, for an estimated 1.44 million sleepers.
“Inland Rail is already securing jobs for regional Australians. The benefits of Inland Rail will be felt far beyond the route as businesses come on board to build this essential link in our national supply chain,” said ARTC Inland Rail Chief Executive, Richard Wankmuller.
The project expects to create 16,000 jobs when construction is fully underway. Inland Rail and the ARTC are focused on ensuring that in addition to the major construction industry jobs, local companies, businesses and job seekers will be able to participate in the different aspects of Inland Rail where they can, according to an Inland Rail statement.
“This once-in-a generation project will complete the backbone of the national freight network by providing a transit time of 24 hours or less for freight trains between Melbourne and Brisbane via regional Victoria, New South Wales and Queensland,” said Wankmuller.
Construction on the Parkes to Narromine section of the track has been underway for ten months now, and ARTC believes businesses in the area are already benefitting from the flow of work from Inland Rail. These businesses include services for concrete supply, transportation, fencing, earthmoving, drainage, electrical works, security and water bore drilling providers.
“Inland Rail construction is injecting significant dollars into local businesses and the regional economy with $41.2 million spent so far,” said Wankmuller of the Parkes to Narromine construction efforts.
ARTC hopes more such work will come from the Narrabri to North Star project, which will include upgrading around 171km of existing rail track through the reconstruction of existing track, replacement of bridges and culverts, level crossings and crossing loops.