Inland Rail: NSW projects in spotlight

Parkes to Narromine and Narrabri to North Star sections declared essential for state

Inland Rail: NSW projects in spotlight
ARTC has held community information sessions in the Parkes region.


Two stages related to the Melbourne to Brisbane Inland Rail project have been declared vital for the New South Wales economy by the state government.

The Parkes to Narromine and Narrabri to North Star sections have been given Critical State Significant Infrastructure status on the grounds of economic, social and environmental merit associated with them.

Federal infrastructure and transport minister Darren Chester has welcomed the news.

"This announcement is a reflection of why the Australian Government is committed to the delivery of the Inland Rail project," Chester says.

"It will support thousands of jobs during construction and improve access to domestic and international markets."

Federal member for Parkes Mark Coulton says Inland Rail would benefit the state through improved reliability of freight rail transport, improved service standards and lower freight costs.

"Truck volumes and road congestion on some of the state’s busiest highways, including the Newell, will also be reduced which will also lead to improved road safety," Coulton says.

"We’ll also see a real boost in opportunities for businesses throughout regional New South Wales, with western New South Wales set to be a real winner in terms of economic spinoffs, which is great news in terms of local jobs growth.

"I am delighted this announcement has been made. It sets the stage for further activity, with work expected to start in the New Year on the Parkes to Narromine section of the project, and planning work for the Narrabri to North Star section of the line progressing well."

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has earlier held information sessions in the region to gather community input as the project moves into the design stage.

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