New rail loop at Aerosol Valley an early Christmas present for Hunter Valley rail corridor

Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has finished the year on a high note, reaching another milestone in its drive to increase capacity on the Hunter Valley rail corridor.

Today, ARTC completed construction of a new rail passing loop at Aerosol Valley between Muswellbrook and Gulgong.

The $15.3 million project involved the construction of a new two kilometre passing loop, including new turnouts, rail and around 3,100 new sleepers.

The new loop will enable trains to pass each other efficiently as one train enters the loop and waits for a short period while the other train passes at regular speed.

The new loop will allow for more train paths and thus increased capacity on the Ulan coal line.

ARTC CEO, David Marchant, explained that this new passing loop is part of ARTC’s strategy to further develop capacity on the Hunter Valley Coal lines.

“This new passing loop at Aerosol Valley is another step forward in ARTC’s strategy to deliver increased capacity on the Hunter Valley coal lines,” Mr Marchant said.

“There is more to be done and 2010 will be an exciting year as we continue to develop the Hunter Valley network.”

“ARTC is currently running the Hunter rail network well ahead of market demand; however, we know that demand for Hunter Valley coal is set to increase dramatically by 2012. The ongoing upgrade of the corridor with new signals, more passing loops and bridge replacements is part of ARTC’s ongoing strategy to stay ahead of future export capacity for coal,” Mr Marchant said.

ARTC partnered with Laing O’Rourke, MVM Rail, Macmahon and Ansaldo STS to deliver the project on time and on budget.

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