The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC), has opened tenders for the design and construction of the Cabramatta Loop Project, a critical component in meeting Sydney’s future freight demand.

ARTC Group Executive Interstate Network, Peter Winder, said the Cabramatta Loop Project involves the construction and operation of a passing loop on the eastern side of the Southern Sydney Freight Line between Cabramatta Station and Warwick Farm Station, which will enable trains to pass at a key juncture.

“This transformative project will help increase the share of freight moved by rail in New South Wales and create up to 220 jobs during the construction phase that is scheduled to start in 2021,” Mr Winder said.

“Downer EDI, Fulton Hogan and John Holland Group have been shortlisted for the design and construction work for the Cabramatta Loop, which will help accommodate the expected increase in containers being moved by rail to and from Port Botany on the Southern Sydney Freight Line.

“The Australian Government has made a $400 million commitment to the Port Botany Rail Line Duplication and Cabramatta Loop projects, which have been identified as essential to enabling more freight to be transported by rail through Port Botany.

“The Cabramatta Loop will aid the national supply chain by building upon the benefits of other capacity improvements across the ARTC network, by enabling freight trains up to 1,300 min length that are travelling in either direction, to pass each other.

“The increase in rail capacity will create greater reliability for freight customers, improve operational efficiency and flexibility, and ease pressure on Sydney’s already congested roads by increasing rail freight market share.”

Mr Winder said the delivery of the Cabramatta Loop is important to meet the freight demands of Australia’s biggest city.

“Australia’s freight task is set to experience significant growth over the coming decades, and demand on the Southern Sydney Freight Line is anticipated to reach capacity by 2023,” Mr Winder said.

“Earlier this year Infrastructure Australia, the nation’s independent infrastructure advisor, added Cabramatta Loop to its Infrastructure Priority List, which lists projects deemed essential for economic, social or environmental reasons.

“In its assessment Infrastructure Australia found there is strong strategic merit for the project as it supports the NSW Government’s aim to increase the mode share of containers being moved by rail to and from Port Botany, where currently around 80 per cent of containers are transported by road.”

Minister for Finance, Simon Birmingham, said the delivery of the Cabramatta Loop was important to meeting the freight demands of Sydney as well as linking the regions with one of Australia’s largest ports 

“Australia’s freight flows are set to experience significant growth over the coming decades and demand for further capacity on the Southern Sydney Freight Line is expected by the mid-2020s,” Mr Birmingham said. 

“This is part of the Australian Government’s investment to increase the safety and efficiency of the national freight network to ensure Australian businesses remain globally competitive and deliver their products to markets in Australia and overseas with more ease.”

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