Government Backs Railways With Re-Sleeper Program

Government Backs Railways With Re-Sleeper Program

Western Australia Minister for Transport Simon O’Brien

Great Southern Grain Rail Re-sleepering Program Gets A Government Boost

Victor P Taffa

Transport Minister Simon O’Brien said this week’s announcement of a Grain Freight Network upgrade had special significance for the Great Southern Railway Line.

Speaking in Katanning, Mr. O’Brien said the $178.8 Million State Government funding package meant the current re-sleepering program on the Great Southern Line could continue uninterrupted.

“More than $13.5 Million has been invested in the Re-sleepering Program since the Government this year announced interim funding for the Network Upgrade.” the Minister said.

“That has enabled Westnet, which has invested more than $8.25 Million as well, to begin laying sleepers on Stage 1 of the upgrade, from Wagin through to Redmond, near Albany.  The new funding package ensures this continues as well as Stage 2 from Avon to Narrogin.”

 

The Minister today inspected works at Katanning, accompanied by Agricultural Region MLCs Jim Chown and Brian Ellis.

Nearly 400 km of Rail Lines in the Albany Zone will be upgraded under the package, including the Wagin-Newdegate and Hyden-Lake Grace lines at a cost of more than $72 Million.

Overall, more than 1,200 km of railway through the Wheatbelt regions will be upgraded at a cost of $187.9 Million.

The State Government’s funding initiative also locks in a Federal Government contribution of $135 Million.

“Combined with the State’s contribution earlier this year, it brings the total investment in the grain freight network to $352 Million over four years the biggest upgrade of the network in 20 years.” Mr. O’Brien said.

“This is an unprecedented level of investment in the Grain Freight Network, and demonstrates the Government’s commitment to the long-term continuity of the Grain Industry and Rural Communities.” Mr. O’Brien said.