'Missing link' completed to improve interstate freight

Upgrade to fix the Port of Melbourne’s ‘missing link’ has completed, paving the way for efficiency and productivity gains

October 26, 2010

Rail freight efficiency at the Port of Melbourne is tipped to improve after work to connect the port and the interstate freight network was completed.

Dubbed the ‘missing link’, the project involved duplicating the dual gauge track between Sims Street Junction and the port, building 18 new turnouts, installing new signalling and reconstructing the Melbourne Operations Terminal.

The Australian Rail Track Corporation also built a new line between North Dynon and the port.

Labelling it one of the most significant improvements to the interstate rail network in recent years, ARTC CEO David Marchant says the project will allow freight to be moved faster.

"The new rail infrastructure will pave the way for a more flexible operating environment at South Dynon and increase yield, capacity, efficiency and reliability of the rail network," Marchant says.

Victorian Public Transport Minister Martin Pakula says the upgrade will also benefit Melbourne’s urban rail network.

"In short the new and duplicated rail lines will allow both passenger and freight traffic to coexist in a more efficient manner than was previously the case," he says.

The Federal Government pumped $20 million into the upgrade, with $13.3 million coming from the Victorian Government. The ARTC invested $6.5 million.

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