McConnell Dowell JV to begin work on $347m rail project in Australia


The McConnell Dowell and Martinus Rail Joint Venture (MMJV) is set to commence work on Murray Basin Rail Project in Australia. 

Touted to be one of the largest freight upgrade projects in Australia, the Murray Basin Rail Project will attract nearly AUD440m ($346.7m) investment jointly funded by the Federal and Victorian governments.

V/Line is supervising the Murray Basin Rail Project, which involves the upgrade and conversion of over 1,000km of track to standard gauge. The scope of project also includes re-opening of the 87km freight train line from Maryborough to Ararat.

The Maryborough to Ararat track is scheduled to reopen in January 2018, returning freight trains to the line for the first time in more than a decade.

McConnell Dowell said the initial works along the line are already underway including vegetation removal and site investigations.

As per the plans, works will start in Dunolly, delivering major upgrades to the Mildura freight rail line.

Crews will upgrade and convert the track from Dunolly to Yelta, and Ouyen to Murrayville from broad gauge to standard gauge. The upgrade will boost train axle loadings from 19 tonnes to 21 tonnes between Dunolly and Yelta to allow freight trains to carry larger loads.

McConnell Dowell operations manager Jim Miller said: “This is an important project for the State and for regional businesses relying on freight. For McConnell Dowell it is an opportunity to demonstrate our expertise in delivering long line renewal.”

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