Upgrade work on upper Hunter Valley sites boosts coal lines

Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is rolling out another package of upgrades on the Hunter Valley and Upper Hunter Valley rail corridors this week.

The important package of upgrades will take place from Tuesday 9th to Friday 12th August and will allow for significant works to take place.

The $11 million upgrades will encompass approximately 120 individual projects during the closedown carried out on the coal lines.

ARTC CEO, John Fullerton, explained that this possession was part of ARTC’s strategy to further develop capacity on the Hunter Valley Coal lines.

“This possession is part ARTC’s ongoing strategy to keep ahead of market demand for capacity on the Hunter Valley rail corridor. It will allow ARTC to implement valuable upgrades as part of the ongoing development of the Hunter Valley Rail Corridor,” he said.

“ARTC works closely with our customers to plan these possessions; there is a genuine understanding that these brief shut downs are essential in ensuring that rail remains an efficient and reliable component of Hunter Valley coal chain.”

“The possession will also allow some ‘heavy lifting’ to be done on the Minimbah to Maitland Third Track project where large girders are being laid over a new road overpass at Branxton, replacing an old level crossing,” Mr Fullerton said.

“This project will triplicate the line thereby increasing capacity allowing us to get more coal to port more efficiently.”

Examples of the works being undertaken include:

  • Girder insertion at Hermitage Road bridge, Branxton;
  • Rerailing;
  • Rail Grinding;
  • Resurfacing;
  • Level crossing maintenance; and
  • Culvert upgrades.

During the possession, no coal trains will be running and some commuter services will be diverted to buses.

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