Southern Sydney Freight Line Upgrade - Latest News and Updates

Priority Status: Priority Initiative

State: NSW

City: Sydney

Suburbs Affected: Macarthur to Sefton 

Southern Sydney Freight Line upgrade Project Plan

  • Federal Funding: 400 million
  • Project Type: Rail - Rail line
  • Length of Job: 36 km

Southern Sydney Freight Line Upgrade Construction Details

The Southern Sydney Freight Line (SSFL) initiative is part of a larger project to boost growth in the sharing of modes of rail. It aims to enhance the ability to move freight through the city, via rail, with a specific focus between the Moorebank Intermodal Terminal (MIT) and Port Botany and a proposed Western Sydney Freight Line (WSFL) in the future. The works include track replications and the provision of additional loops for passing along the 36 km single line from Sefton to Macarthur. Infrastructure Australia is assessing the Cabramatta passing loop (proposed for the SSFL) which would be completed in tandem with the Port Botany freight rail duplication. Previously endorsed by the NSW Government, the new advocate for the initiative is the Australian Rail Track Corporation.

Southern Sydney Freight Line upgrade Tender Stage and Contract

As of February 20 2020, this was the last known update on the tendering stage of the Southern Sydney Freight Line upgrade.

Known Contractors Tendering

Botany rail duplication: CPB Contractors, Laing O’Rourke and John Holland

Cabramatta loop project: Downer EDI, Fulton Hogan and John Holland

Southern Sydney Freight Line Upgrade Jobs & Community Plan

The SSFL and the broader rail freight network of Sydney, will experience escalating demand with the varying types of freight (inter and intra state and import/export) projected to grow. One contributor to this growth and subsequent pressure is the development of the Moorebank Intermodal Terminal (MIT). The productivity of the SSFL, especially when the MIT is fully operational, will be vital. As an important connection point between the MIT and other hubs, additional capacity is required to ensure it does not become a choking point within the network. Other potential capacity constraints exist with the proposed future development of the WSFL, which would connect the broader Sydney rail freight network at the SSFL.

Central to the success of the initiative is the provision of an efficient rail freight service to alleviate road pressures around Port Botany. Currently, around 82% of containerised freight processed at Port Botany was transported by road, with rail freight representing only 18%. With Port Botany seeing around 3,900 truck movements per day, major roadways such as the M4 and M5 are experiencing significant congestion which lowers overall productivity. The Infrastructure Australia Audit highlighted the need for additional capacity and increased levels of service across Sydney's freight rail network. Funding of key projects in the network will ensure future success of infrastructure investments such as the MIT.