Interstate network update

Hi everyone,

As part of our ongoing work to provide customers with safe, efficient and reliable access to our Interstate network, I wanted to provide an update on some important developments.

Network investment and resilience

In response to the increase in extreme weather events that have disrupted our supply chains in recent times, we’ve prioritised network resilience and are progressing a number of key actions.

In addition to the $150 million that we spend each year on capital, asset renewal and maintenance activities across our Interstate network, we’re investing an extra $170 million on corridor capital activities to further improve the resilience of the network. This includes additional rerailing, signalling upgrades and vegetation works. We’re also about to complete a major hydrology study to mitigate flood risks across our network, with the findings to inform the future capital investments we make to improve hydraulic capacities.

And we’ve been working closely with customers in recent months, not only around options to improve the physical robustness of our network to better withstand weather-related events in the future, but also on ways to improve network performance and meet future capacity requirements.

Significantly, this has informed the development of a network investment program, which sets out ARTC’s long-term vision for the development of our Interstate and Hunter Valley networks over the next 30 years. The program will change the way we identify and manage network investments in the future, and help establish a rolling program of activities to align with government policy and customer priorities. We’ll keep you informed of future developments in 2024.

Interstate Access Undertaking

We recognise the importance of the regulatory framework that underpins the provision of network access to our customers in a manner that is transparent, equitable and enables increased competition and growth.

I’m pleased to report we’re in a position to put an updated Interstate Access Undertaking (IAU) covering our Interstate rail network to the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for its consideration.

The IAU has been prepared based on ACCC positions and consultation with our customers, whose input we’re extremely appreciative of.

Key improvements proposed include:

  • A determined price path over the next five years
  • A shift to commercial arbitration for any matters requiring resolution
  • A commitment to consult on investment plans with access seekers
  • Inclusion of network sections not currently covered, including in Queensland and the Sydney Metropolitan Freight Network.

Following our submission of the replacement IAU to the ACCC, they will assess ARTC’s proposed undertaking and engage further with industry ahead of finalising their view. We’ll continue to work with our customers and freight owners as well as the ACCC as they review our application.

Intermodal terminals

Improving intermodal terminal capacity and efficiency in Australia is important if we’re to fully realise the benefits of rail to move freight around the country.

We welcome the Australian Government’s commitment to continued terminal investment at Moorebank (NSW) and the progress being made on a new freight precinct at Beveridge (VIC).

At ARTC, we’re working with stakeholders on proposed new intermodal terminals and upgraded connections at a number of locations across our network, and are aligning our broader investment plans accordingly.

We’ll continue to support customers as other new terminal concepts progress around Australia, and indeed, keep working hard to manage more effective and resilient infrastructure as part of our commitment to keep strengthening our service offering.


Simon Ormsby

Group Executive Interstate, ARTC

Simon Ormsby


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