The Government of New South Wales has approved the new detailed plans for two freight rail projects in Sydney’s area, that will ease traffic congestion on capital’s busiest roads.
Under the plans, the current single freight rail track between Mascot and Botany will be duplicated and a new passing loop will be added to the freight line between Cabramatta and Warwick Farm stations. This will allow an increased capacity for longer freight trains of up to 1,300 metres.
Botany rail duplication and Cabramatta Loop projects will improve the current supply and help meet Sydney’s future freight demand.
According to the Regional Transport Ministry, the fast-tracked assessment will enable construction works to commence within the next six months.
“As the state’s largest container port the efficient operation of Port Botany is critical. Forecasts predict a whopping 77 per cent increase in the amount of freight it handles from 14.4 million tonnes in 2016 to 25.5 million tonnes by 2036,” the Minister for Transport and Roads Andrew Constance said.
The two freight rail projects are been delivered by the Australian Rail Track Corporation. The Cabramatta Loop project is expected to be completed by mid-2023 and the Botany rail duplication expected to be completed by late-2024.
The Cabramatta Loop project aims at the construction of a freight rail passing loop between Cabramatta and Warwick Farm. It will alleviate traffic constraints and increase the capacity Sydney’s freight rail network to meet existing and future demands. It will also support the operation of intermodal terminals, including Enfield, Chullora and Moorebank.
The project includes the construction of a new 1.65 km track with connections to the existing track at the northern and southern ends, the realignment of a 550 metres of existing track sideways to make room for the new track, the construction of two new bridge structures adjacent to the existing rail bridges over Sussex Street and Cabramatta Creek and road works.
The Botany rail duplication project includes the construction of a 3 km of new track within the rail corridor, track realignment and upgrading, the construction of new crossovers and bridge works.
These projects part of the NSW Government’s Planning System Acceleration Programme that is keeping people in jobs and the economy moving through the coronavirus pandemic. To date, the programme has created opportunities for more than 41,000 jobs and AUD 18.2 billion (USD 13 billion) in economic benefit.