Key facts

Work on Australia's largest rail infrastructure project is well underway. Inland Rail will reduce freight costs, better link businesses and producers to markets, create jobs, and reduce our reliance on roads to move our growing volumes of freight.

It’s happening – here are the facts on Inland Rail

1. We need Inland Rail to share the growing freight load with roads

Australia’s freight demand is forecast to double in the next 10 years. We need Inland Rail to help share the load and reduce our reliance on roads to transport goods.
That’s why Inland Rail has again been listed as a Priority Project on the 2020 Infrastructure Australia Priority List.

2. Inland Rail is a 1,700km freight rail network that will transform how we move goods around Australia

Inland Rail will complete the backbone of the national freight rail network, offering a transit time of less than 24 hours between Melbourne to Brisbane. It will link businesses, farmers and producers to national and global markets and generate new opportunities for industries and regions.

3. Construction has begun and is scheduled for completion in 2025

Construction of the 103km Parkes to Narromine project is expected to be completed in mid-2020. Works on the 188km Narrabri to North Star project are expected to start in late 2020. Our other 11 projects are in reference design stage.

4. It's divided into 13 distinct projects

This large, complex project is broken up into 13 smaller projects: one project in Victoria, seven in New South Wales, and five in Queensland. The longest project is Narromine to Narrabri in NSW, at just over 300km long, and the shortest is Gowrie to Helidon in Queensland at 28km.

View our projects:

5. We will upgrade 1,100km of existing track and build 600km of new track

Did you know that 70% of the route is existing rail lines and infrastructure that will be enhanced and upgraded? This will help maximise the value of previous investments in the national rail freight network and minimise the environmental and community impacts associated with creating new rail corridors. The remaining 600km of new track will connect missing links in the Brisbane to Melbourne network.
View route maps

6. $9.3b has been committed to build it

The Australian Government has committed $9.3b for ARTC to develop and build Inland Rail. Additional funds will come from a partnership with the private sector.

7. It will revitalise regional economies and boost Australia's GDP by $16 billion

Inland Rail will increase gross domestic product (GDP) by $16 billion during project delivery and the first 50 years of operation. It's already giving a boost to regional economies. As of December 2019, more than 320 contracts worth more than $700 million have already been awarded, stimulating new revenue and growth opportunities for our regions.
View business opportunities

8. It will create thousands of jobs

At the peak of construction, Inland Rail will create more than 16,000 direct and indirect jobs. An additional 700 ongoing jobs will be created once Inland Rail is operational.
View job opportunities

9. We consult closely with local communities

We value the local knowledge of landowners, businesses and regional communities, which all helps to shape Inland Rail. We work with local communities and affected landowners to mitigate impacts and create long-term community benefits. Local input and knowledge have already delivered community benefits:

  • including additional and safer level crossings along the entire 1,700km route
  • adding more bridges over floodplains and roads to improve public safety
  • using local knowledge to inform modelling on the Condamine floodplain, with some 50 flood-markers and more than 400 photos creating a crossing solution with minimal impacts
  • ensuring there is capacity to integrate passenger rail, where it might be required in the future.

10. It will take 262,000 tonnes of steel and 745,000 cubic metres of concrete to build and will include the largest diameter diesel freight tunnel in the Southern Hemisphere

That’s equivalent to five Sydney Harbour Bridges full of steel and enough to build more than 12 Q1 Buildings (Australia’s tallest building). As part of the Gowrie to Helidon project in Queensland, a new 6.38km tunnel will be built through the steep terrain of the Toowoomba Range, making it the largest diameter diesel freight tunnel in the Southern Hemisphere.

11. Inland Rail will connect to Melbourne and Brisbane ports

Inland Rail will be linked to the ports from the day it opens, via existing rail lines. Trains currently travel to both ports and will continue to do so when Inland Rail opens.

Work on Australia's largest rail infrastructure project is well underway. Inland Rail will reduce freight costs, better link businesses and producers to markets, create jobs, and reduce our reliance on roads to move our growing volumes of freight.

It’s happening – here are the facts on Inland Rail

1. We need Inland Rail to share the growing freight load with roads

Australia’s freight demand is forecast to double in the next 10 years. We need Inland Rail to help share the load and reduce our reliance on roads to transport goods.
That’s why Inland Rail has again been listed as a Priority Project on the 2020 Infrastructure Australia Priority List.

2. Inland Rail is a 1,700km freight rail network that will transform how we move goods around Australia

Inland Rail will complete the backbone of the national freight rail network, offering a transit time of less than 24 hours between Melbourne to Brisbane. It will link businesses, farmers and producers to national and global markets and generate new opportunities for industries and regions.

3. Construction has begun and is scheduled for completion in 2025

Construction of the 103km Parkes to Narromine project is expected to be completed in mid-2020. Works on the 188km Narrabri to North Star project are expected to start in late 2020. Our other 11 projects are in reference design stage.

4. It's divided into 13 distinct projects

This large, complex project is broken up into 13 smaller projects: one project in Victoria, seven in New South Wales, and five in Queensland. The longest project is Narromine to Narrabri in NSW, at just over 300km long, and the shortest is Gowrie to Helidon in Queensland at 28km.

View our projects:

5. We will upgrade 1,100km of existing track and build 600km of new track

Did you know that 70% of the route is existing rail lines and infrastructure that will be enhanced and upgraded? This will help maximise the value of previous investments in the national rail freight network and minimise the environmental and community impacts associated with creating new rail corridors. The remaining 600km of new track will connect missing links in the Brisbane to Melbourne network.
View route maps

6. $9.3b has been committed to build it

The Australian Government has committed $9.3b for ARTC to develop and build Inland Rail. Additional funds will come from a partnership with the private sector.

7. It will revitalise regional economies and boost Australia's GDP by $16 billion

Inland Rail will increase gross domestic product (GDP) by $16 billion during project delivery and the first 50 years of operation. It's already giving a boost to regional economies. As of December 2019, more than 320 contracts worth more than $700 million have already been awarded, stimulating new revenue and growth opportunities for our regions.
View business opportunities

8. It will create thousands of jobs

At the peak of construction, Inland Rail will create more than 16,000 direct and indirect jobs. An additional 700 ongoing jobs will be created once Inland Rail is operational.
View job opportunities

9. We consult closely with local communities

We value the local knowledge of landowners, businesses and regional communities, which all helps to shape Inland Rail. We work with local communities and affected landowners to mitigate impacts and create long-term community benefits. Local input and knowledge have already delivered community benefits:

  • including additional and safer level crossings along the entire 1,700km route
  • adding more bridges over floodplains and roads to improve public safety
  • using local knowledge to inform modelling on the Condamine floodplain, with some 50 flood-markers and more than 400 photos creating a crossing solution with minimal impacts
  • ensuring there is capacity to integrate passenger rail, where it might be required in the future.

10. It will take 262,000 tonnes of steel and 745,000 cubic metres of concrete to build and will include the largest diameter diesel freight tunnel in the Southern Hemisphere

That’s equivalent to five Sydney Harbour Bridges full of steel and enough to build more than 12 Q1 Buildings (Australia’s tallest building). As part of the Gowrie to Helidon project in Queensland, a new 6.38km tunnel will be built through the steep terrain of the Toowoomba Range, making it the largest diameter diesel freight tunnel in the Southern Hemisphere.

11. Inland Rail will connect to Melbourne and Brisbane ports

Inland Rail will be linked to the ports from the day it opens, via existing rail lines. Trains currently travel to both ports and will continue to do so when Inland Rail opens.

Rate this page

How helpful was this content?

* required
Please hold on while your response is being submitted