Inland Rail Narrabri to North Star section gains environmental approval

Contractors are one step closer to breaking ground on the Inland Rail section from Narrabri to North Star, in NSW, as it gains environmental approval.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack welcomed the approval, providing further certainty on Inland Rail’s delivery and the significant local jobs and investment the freight rail line will bring.

“Inland Rail will play a key role in getting our economy back on track because it means more people in jobs and it means more productivity for so many industries and local businesses,” McCormack said.

“On the Parkes to Narromine section, 1,800 jobs were supported and more than $109 million was spent with 99 local businesses – we’re looking forward to seeing Northern New South Wales enjoy similar benefits soon with construction on this section starting later this year.”

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann said Inland Rail would deliver many benefits to New South Wales, both in the short and over the longer term, by facilitating increased local business investment, substantial improvements to our freight network and the creation of more new jobs.

“Inland Rail will support more than 5,000 jobs in New South Wales during construction and as each section is completed, more fast and reliable rail services will become available to industry and regional producers across Australia,” Cormann said.

“Large scale infrastructure projects are a key driver of growth – driving investment, boosting economic development, creating many new jobs and opportunities for local businesses.”

Minister for Regional Health, Regional Communications and Local Government and Federal Member for Parkes, Mark Coulton welcomed the approval and encouraged local communities to engage with the project to make the most of the local construction opportunities.

“Inland Rail will be a game changer in Northern NSW and there are endless opportunities for local businesses to take advantage of the next stage of construction between Narrabri and North Star,” Coulton said.

“The first recently completed section – Parkes to Narromine – provided a significant boost to businesses across a range of industries, including concrete supply, transportation, fencing, earthmoving, accommodation, hospitality and security in what has been a difficult time for many rural businesses with drought, fires and now COVID-19.”

The first section of Inland Rail was completed in September this year, between Parkes and Narromine.

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