“Construction has now started on the extension of the crossing loop at Braunstone, south of Grafton to facilitate the operation of 1500 metre freight trains on the North Coast Line.” Australian Rail Track Corporation Ltd (ARTC) Chief Executive David Marchant said today.
The existing 894 metre crossing loop at Braunstone will be extended to accommodate the crossing of 1500 metre long freight trains. The new loop is expected to be commissioned in July.
“This extension of the loop is part of a larger program on the important North Coast line to increase efficiencies on the line between Sydney and Brisbane by allowing the consistent running of 1500 metre trains.” Mr Marchant said.
As part of ARTC’s $2 billion investment in the North South interstate rail network from Brisbane to Melbourne, ARTC will build 4 new crossing loops and extend 10 existing crossing loops on the North Coast Line to increase efficiency for rail freight transport.
The lack of longer crossing loops on the North Coast line has limited some trains to 700 to 800 metre lengths. This project will improve the overall efficiency of rail freight movement between Sydney and Brisbane by providing many more locations where longer freight trains can pass each other on the North Coast Line. Mr Marchant said
In addition, as part of the program on the North Coast Line, 18 existing 1500 metre crossing loops will also be upgraded, the line will be fully concrete sleepered and there will be rehabilitation work done on bridges and other structures.
At the conclusion of ARTC’s 3 year North South investment strategy transit times from Sydney to Brisbane for 1500 metre superfreighters are estimated to decrease by nearly 4 hours from 19 hours 22 minutes to 15 hours 30 minutes.
12 February 2007
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