Moving More Freight Off Roads To Rail

27 August 2022

Works to move more freight onto rail and take more trucks off local roads in Melbourne’s south-east have progressed, as part of the Port Rail Shuttle Network (PRSN) project.

Crews have completed laying the track of a new rail connection, enabling freight to be transported more efficiently from Dandenong South to the Port of Melbourne.

The connection – known as a spur line – will also link the Cranbourne line to a new intermodal freight terminal to be constructed and operated by Salta Properties later this year.

As part of three key initiatives to be delivered as part of the PRSN, this will result in lower transport costs for businesses and take thousands of trucks off arterial and suburban roads.

The Australian Government is contributing $38 million towards this project and the Victorian Government $20 million.

Direct rail connections will be provided from the Port of Melbourne to major freight hubs in metropolitan Melbourne in the south-east, north and west.

Works to link the SCT Logistics terminal in Altona continue as part of the project, while construction at the Austrak terminal in Somerton is scheduled to take place later this year.

Once complete, PRSN will slash truck movements on suburban roads by up to 175,000 trips each year and cut freight transport costs by up to 10 per cent.

The work at Dandenong South is being delivered by the Level Crossing Removal Project as part of the $1 billion Cranbourne Line Upgrade.

Passengers on the Cranbourne line are also benefiting from completed track duplication, which has increased train services to every 10 minutes in the morning peak.

Quotes attributable to Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Catherine King

"The Port Rail Shuttle Network will not only enhance the strategic importance of freight and logistics operators – it will also deliver efficiencies and cost-savings for businesses."

"The Australian Governent’s $38 million investment in this project will enable producers and operators to transport their product more efficiently, boost the economy and reduce congestion on the road network.”

Quotes attributable to Victorian Minister for Ports and Freight Melissa Horne

"The Victorian freight task is growing every year, and we know that rail must and will shoulder more of the heavy lifting to keep our economy thriving.

"That's why we’re investing in projects like the Port Rail Shuttle Network – to enable producers and operators to transport their product quicker and cheaper to port and to market, as well as create jobs and take more trucks off our local roads.”

Quote attributable to Federal Member for Isaacs Mark Dreyfus

"The PRSN project will see freight rightly taken off busy suburban roads, making them safer and less congested for motorists travelling in the area.”

Quote attributable to Federal Member for Macnamara Josh Burns

"The Port Rail Shuttle is a major win for Melbourne, which will enable cost benefits and efficiency for Victorian businesses and freight operators.”

Quote attributable to Victorian Member for Dandenong Gabrielle Williams

‘’This project is critical for the south-east economy and for commuters, improving business productivity, creating jobs and taking thousands of trucks off the Monash Freeway and other key arterial and suburban roads.”

Reviewed 27 August 2022

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