The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has awarded a $30 million contract for the signalling and signalling civil design for significant sections of the Inland Rail.

Arcadis Australia Pacific is the successful company tasked with delivering the design of rail signalling systems from concept through to final commissioning for the Inland Rail sections north of Illabo in New South Wales, through to Acacia Ridge and Bromelton in Queensland.

ARTC Inland Rail Chief Executive Officer, Richard Wankmuller, welcomed Inland Rail’s new partnership and its potential to create 20 new jobs over the next five years for the project.

“Inland Rail is going to change freight in Australia, creating opportunity in the regions with large investment and generating employment,” Mr Wankmuller said.

“The value of this once-in-a-generation infrastructure project is much more than improving our supply chain to move our goods, it is creating thousands of jobs by its construction.”

Mr Wankmuller said there were also benefits of having a significant component of the signalling and signalling civil design work delivered by a single team.

“This is a specialised aspect of the Inland Rail project and by engaging one company to deliver the majority of this important body of design work there will be a consistency of quality and a more efficient use of resources across the program,” Mr Wankmuller said.

“Economically, it makes sense too, because it has reduced the need to hire scarce signalling design experts for each of the individual projects under the program delivery strategy.”

Arcadis AusPac CEO, Malcolm McDowall, said the Inland Rail Systems Program is one of the most significant infrastructure projects for Australia.

“The Inland Rail Systems Program is a transformative project, which will reduce freight costs, boost the economy, and help reduce carbon emissions, providing ongoing benefits to Australia,” Mr McDowall said.

“Arcadis will utilise its highly experienced team to deliver the signalling and signalling civil design from concept through to final commissioning for each of the Inland Rail sub-projects over a six-year period.

“We are proud to have been selected by ARTC and are looking forward to working with our partners to support our Australian communities.”

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said Inland Rail was delivering jobs, opportunities and regional resilience.

“Our Government backs regional Australia with the infrastructure and programs that will unlock the untapped potential and economic growth of our regional centres,” Mr McCormack said.

Mr McCormack said the Arcadis contract was one of more than 1,000 contracts awarded to date as part of the Inland Rail project.

Local Member for Parkes and Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government, Mark Coulton, said that Inland Rail was bringing jobs to regional Australia.

“To design the rail signalling systems for Inland Rail, Arcadis will have regional resources in Bathurst, Orange and Mudgee to complement its central offices in Sydney and Brisbane,” Mr Coulton said.

“This $30 million contract for Inland Rail signalling design will provide work for 80 Australians, with the majority of these located in New South Wales and opportunities for local people to apply for regional positions working with Arcadis over the next six years.

“Through the design and construction of Inland Rail, the Australian Government’s investment in infrastructure is bringing immediate opportunities to our regions, providing work in professional and trade based sectors.”

Local Member for Calare and Minister for Decentralisation and Regional Education, Andrew Gee, welcomed the news that towns in regional New South Wales were directly contributing to Inland Rail.

“Regional New South Wales is benefiting greatly from the design and construction of Inland Rail,” Mr Gee said.

“The contracts to design and deliver Inland Rail are allowing businesses in regional New South Wales to employ local people and demonstrating the enormous capability of our regions as businesses look to the bush for their next office and opportunity for growth.”

Inland Rail signalling and trackside infrastructure will be designed and delivered to integrate with the Advanced Train Management System, supporting enhanced rail safety and freight efficiency across the national network.

After a competitive tender process, the signalling design services commenced in November 2020 with an expected completion date in 2027.

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