South Australia Minister for Transport Patrick Conlon
Electrification Charges Ahead
Victor P Taffa
Another major milestone has been reached in the State Government’s multi Billon dollar investment in public transport with short listed consortia asked to submit their proposals to electrify Adelaide’s 100-kilometre passenger rail network.
Transport Minister, Patrick Conlon said successful companies were now being invited to tender for the electrification major works package following a call for Expressions of Interest in November 2009 that generated considerable interest nationally.
“This is the important next stage of the $2.6 Billion, decade-long rail revitalisation program and we hope to start design work later this year.” Mr. Conlon said.
“We can then start major site works commencing next year and electrified train services will operate on the Adelaide to Seaford and Adelaide to Gawler lines in 2013.”
“The $400 Million electrification of the Adelaide rail network will provide a platform for more modern and efficient train services for commuters while reducing noise and local air pollution.” Mr. Conlon said.
“The program will also create around 2000 jobs for South Australians.”
“The scale of these works is unprecedented in metropolitan Adelaide we’re rolling this out along a network for over 100 km of track across the metropolitan area from Gawler in the North, to Seaford down South and all the way to Outer Harbor.”
The major works package is the largest in the electrification project, covering installation of masts and overhead wires required to power the system, along with railway signalling and communications.
This is the first of two significant tenders for the project; the second is for the construction of a number of substations to power the electrified network and will be called in coming months.
In May last year, the Federal Government announced $291 Million funding to extend the Noarlunga line to Seaford and $293.5 Million to accelerate the modernisation of the Gawler line as part of its Nation Building Program.
This is in addition to the State Government’s $2 Billion, decade-long investment in public transport that will transform Adelaide’s network into a vibrant, state-of-the-art system.
Upgrade works on the Gawler line as a pre-cursor to electrification begin on June 6, with major construction works on the Seaford extension commencing later this year.