Industry News

ERH’s $12.2M upgrade boosts regional freight connectivity

The latest $12.2 million rail siding upgrade at Ettamogah Rail Hub’s (ERH) container handling site near Albury is expected to increase efficiencies and capacity.

ERH, an intermodal transport facility in New South Wales, has been servicing the Albury-Wodonga region since 2009.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development, Michael McCormack, said the new siding extension will work with Inland Rail to improve regional freight connectivity and reduce the cost for freight operators accessing key markets.

“The Australian Government invested $2.6 million in the 2020–21 Federal Budget to deliver this rail siding and it’s fantastic to see it already complete and operational,” said McCormack.

“With trains previously having to stop on the mainline to exchange wagons at the hub. This new siding now allows rail operators to move up to 1,800 metre long freight trains off the Main South Rail Line while they are being loaded, allowing other rail traffic to pass.

“The efficient connection of this intermodal in southern New South Wales will support more productive supply chains for local producers, growers and manufacturers as the Ettamogah Rail Hub is strategically placed to drive value from Inland Rail’s fast, cost competitive freight services.”

NSW Minister for Regional Transport and Roads, Paul Toole, said the NSW Government had invested $7.58 million towards the project from its $400 million Fixing Country Rail program which is boosting capacity, access and reliability across the regional rail network.

“The siding expansion project will increase rail freight volume and efficiency with the siding being extended to around five kilometres allowing better access to the purpose-built inter-modal facility at Ettamogah,” said Toole.

“Projects like these are an absolute game changer, increasing the capacity of the line and ultimately, making the movement of goods more efficient.”

State Member for Albury, Justin Clancy, said the regional freight task is expected to increase 12 per cent by 2036 to 286 million tonnes per year.

“Completing this work now sets the region up well to meet increased demand into the future,” he said.

ERH delivered the project on behalf of the network owner and operator, Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC).

In other news, early results of a study across 140 commodities show an average transport cost reduction of 39 per cent by shifting freight from road to Inland Rail.

Last year, a manufacturer based in regional Victoria signed an $80 million deal to deliver Inland Rail turnouts.

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