Full Steam Ahead For Port Rail Transformation Project

10 August 2022

The Andrews Labor Government is getting on with transforming the rail network at the Port of Melbourne and taking more trucks off Victorian roads.

Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne and Port of Melbourne CEO Saul Cannon today visited the Port of Melbourne to announce the next stage of works on the Port Rail Transformation Project (PRTP) are now underway.

The $125 million project will make freight rail transport more competitive, take thousands of trucks off roads in the inner west and reduce truck congestion at the port gate.

Expanded rail facilities will include a new Coode Road on-dock rail terminal connecting with the Swanson Dock East International Container Terminal. The rail terminal will include two new rail sidings that can each accommodate 600-metre-long freight trains.

A new road – Intermodal Way – will also be constructed to allow better movement of shipping containers and provide an east-west link within the Swanson Dock Precinct so trucks will no longer need to exit to Footscray Road.

Further works include improvements to the Swanson common user rail sidings to cater for 600-metre long freight trains and a new rail connection linking the Swanson and Appleton lead tracks to allow more flexibility for trains to move within the port.

Construction crews have already prepared underground services and drainage, as well as foundation works for the new rail tracks and associated rail infrastructure.

Once complete, the project will result in major rail supply-chain efficiencies which will be a big win for producers, transport operators and exporters delivering goods to the Port of Melbourne.

On-dock rail is key part of the Labor Government and Australian Governments’ $58 million Port Rail Shuttle Network (PRSN) which will provide direct rail connections from the Port of Melbourne to major freight hubs in Melbourne’s north, west and south-east.

It’ll see trucks deliver or pick up freight from purpose built intermodal terminals at Altona, Dandenong South and Somerton removing thousands of heavy vehicles from inner-suburban roads, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and improving supply chain efficiencies.

The project is scheduled for completion in mid-2023.

Quote attributable to Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne

“This project will deliver massive supply-chain efficiencies for our producers and exporters – and take more trucks off local roads - so it’s great to see the next stage of works now underway.”

Quote attributable to Port of Melbourne CEO Saul Cannon

‘’The Port of Melbourne is investing in infrastructure to move more freight by rail. Our $125 million PRTP will provide the port side infrastructure to welcome future freight trains through the Victorian Government’s Port Rail Shuttle Network.”

Reviewed 10 August 2022

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