The Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) has awarded a $23 million geotechnical investigations contract in preparation to build the 8.5 kilometres of tunnels on Gowrie to Kagaru section of Inland Rail.
Golder Associates will undertake the works for the tunnels, to be built between the Toowoomba, Teviot and Liverpool ranges on the 130-kilometre long section of the project in Queensland.
This detailed work also includes drilling the deepest borehole for the project in Queensland – estimated to be 280 metres – to gather the necessary rock and earth samples.
Deputy Prime Minister and Federal Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack said the geotechnical work will provide vital information for the companies preparing bids to win the Public Private Partnership (PPP) contract for the Gowrie to Kagaru section of the Inland Rail.
“Awarding this $23 million contract will help to generate the best possible design solution for this critically important but ground-breaking segment of the Inland Rail,” he said.
“An estimated $10 per tonne freight saving, with faster and more efficient movement of farm produce from paddock to cities, is just one of the many exciting benefits of the Inland Rail which this government is delivering.
Federal Minister for Finance and the Public Service Mathias Cormann said the geotechnical work is vital to ensuring outcomes such as double-stacked trains being able to operate on the rail line through the ranges west of Brisbane.
“This geotechnical work will provide the vitally important technical information needed to build the 6.4-kilometre tunnel under the Great Dividing Range which will be an engineering feat driven by government and industry collaboration,” he said.