Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Rail Freight Corridor

A $1 billion rail freight corridor upgrade between North Strathfield and Newcastle would add to the number of freight trains operating on the Northern Line each day.
The upgrade, to be completed by 2016, was announced by Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese at a news conference with Premier Barry O’Farrell this morning.
The project would also lift the corridor’s capacity by 50 per cent, from 29 to 44 freight trains a day.
The upgrade was designed to increase freight train movements, reduce carbon emissions by more than 100,000 tonnes a year and take 200,000 trucks a year off the state’s roads.
“Sydney is the biggest bottleneck on the main line between Melbourne and Brisbane,” federal Infrastructure Minister Anthony Albanese said.  The Federal Government would spend $840 million on the project with the NSW Government contributing $214 million.

More information is coming available:
  • The third track through our area will allow passenger trains going north towards Hornsby to pass freight trains climbing slowly up the hill in that direction. 
  • Construction will start March 2012 and complete in June 2016.
Initial assessment of the effects on Beecroft and Cheltenham suggest that main area of contentions for our community will be: 
·         The loss of the west side Cheltenham Rail car park, resulting in increased street parking
·         Widening of the Cheltenham Rd Bridge
·         Increased noise impact on residential dwelling
·         Need for sound attenuation on the locomotives hauling these long freight trains
·         Added pollution from poorly maintained diesel locomotive engines
·         Additional impact on the Beecroft CBD from some of the above and loss on the parkland, the children’s playground adjacent to the railway station and most likely part of the adjacent car park.
·         Widening of the Chapman Ave and other bridges.

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