Interface Improvement Program
The Government has announced eligible proposals under the first round for expressions of interest conducted in late 2019. The list of proposals is published on this site. An additional round for expressions of interest is expected to open mid-2020.
The Australian Government's commitment of $44 million to an Inland Rail Interface Improvement Program (II Program) will enable local communities, industry and government to identify and assess projects that could potentially increase and maximise the long-term benefit of Inland Rail’s connections to the national freight rail network – providing for more productive rail-based supply chains and improvements to capacity on key country rail lines along the Inland Rail corridor.
Through this program, the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Cities and Regional Development (the Department) will allocate specialist service providers to work with eligible project proponents on the development and assessment of project proposals consistent with infrastructure best practice gateway assessment processes that will include pre-feasibility and feasibility studies and strategic business case development.
In delivering the II Program, proposed projects will be considered in relation to existing government policies related to, for example, promoting competition and open access, minimising potential negative externalities, and the desirability of project proposals to reflect region-wide considerations.
Under the two-year Inland Rail II Program, there is funding for:
- A $20.0 million Inland Rail Productivity Enhancement Program (PEP) to develop feasibility studies and strategic business cases to assess the costs and benefits of proposed improvements to the interface between supply chains and Inland Rail, with a view to improving supply chain and community resilience.
- A $24.0 million Inland Rail Country Lines Improvement Program (CLIP) to develop feasibility studies and strategic business cases to assess the costs and benefits of proposed improvements to country lines that intersect with Inland Rail, with a view to potentially accommodating longer, heavier and faster trains.
Visit the Country Lines Improvement Program and Productivity Enhancement Program for further information on the relevant principles that potential projects will initially be assessed against to determine their initial eligibility under the II Program.
We are interested to hear from groups of supply chain managers, producers, local and state governments, local businesses, community representatives and freight and train operators to identify projects for consideration under the II Program.
Potential projects will initially be assessed against how well they address the relevant principles for the PEP or CLIP to determine their eligibility to progress through to an appropriate gate for proposal development and assessment: pre-feasibility, feasibility and strategic business case.
Initially, projects will be considered where they contribute to meeting the relevant principles, including supporting regional economic growth, capacity to increase Inland Rail throughput and supporting National Freight and Supply Chain Priorities.
In addition to the 16 round one proponent proposals, the following proposals went through the same gateway process, were assessed as eligible against program principles and fast-tracked to begin working with advisers in early 2020.
These prioritised proposals include:
- upgrading the Gilgandra-Coonamble line
- improving the road/rail interface at Narrabri
- enhancing the connection at Baradine's grain silos
- investigating the viability of the Lockyer Valley Inland Rail connection
The links above will lead you to announcements about each proposal to find out more.