Rail and road interface connections

In the 2020-21 Budget the Australian Government allocated $150 million to improve the road interfaces with Inland Rail in NSW, with the state government proposed to contribute a further $37.5 million.

These additional grade separations for road and rail intersections will:

  • add to the multiple grade separated crossings already in scope along the alignment
  • improve the efficiency of the road network and boost productivity for freight users
  • support economic recovery and jobs in communities
  • improve safety outcomes by reducing the number of level crossings.

The rail and road interface

An interface is the point where freight is exchanged between two modes of transport. In the rail and road context, it’s the area where a rail corridor or terminal intersect with a road.

Interfaces matter because they make a difference to communities and transport effectiveness. When interfaces work well, they support:

  • efficiency – ensuring freight moves seamlessly between different types of transport
  • reliability of delivery – for example reducing the time lost in transfers
  • safety outcomes – for example providing safe crossing points across rail lines.

Efficiency and reliability

Intermodal terminals are where we consolidate, store and transport freight between rail and road at the beginning, middle and end of rail journeys. Read more about existing and planned intermodal terminals for Inland Rail.

Businesses often gather around these terminals and along existing routes and hubs of supply chains.

The Australian Government’s Interface Improvement Program also invests in developing local ideas to improve connections to Inland Rail, some of which include the rail and road interface. See the list of proposals working with business advisors.

Safety outcomes

Inland Rail is an investment in road safety and reduced congestion along the busy Melbourne to Brisbane transport corridor where 74% of the freight is now carried by road transport.

The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) is focussed on safety as part of their construction of Inland Rail.

For road and rail interfaces across the Inland Rail program, ARTC applies a framework for determining their treatment that is supported by the Office of the National Rail Safety Regulator.

Crossings are adjusted to the needs of individual communities. That includes providing opportunities for safe movement by community members, vehicles and livestock.