Frequently Asked Questions

The Australian Rail Track Corporation also has an Ask a Question Page.

How long does it currently take for freight to travel from Melbourne to Brisbane?

Freight trains currently take over 30 hours to travel between Melbourne and Brisbane via Sydney. Inland Rail will enable a terminal-to-terminal transit time of less than 24 hours, with a service reliability of around 98%, equivalent to that provided by road transport.

How much is Inland Rail expected to cost?

Inland Rail is expected to cost approximately $10 billion.

Why did ARTC do the business case?

Part of ARTC's objectives is to improve interstate rail infrastructure and, as the ‘one stop shop' manager of the national interstate rail network, ARTC is uniquely placed to advise Government.

Why is Inland Rail taking ten years to build?

The 10-year delivery programme was requested by the Australian Government. Inland Rail could be delivered sooner if required or if a shorter delivery schedule provided a cost and benefit advantage.

Why has the alignment changed?

Following community consultation undertaken by the Australian Rail Tack Corporation during 2014 it became apparent that the 2010 Inland Rail study underestimated or did not include some Inland Rail components. Events such as the Lockyer Valley floods in 2011 also resulted in re-assessment of the previous alignment to ensure its suitability.

Where can I get more information about the Inland Rail alignment and my property?

While the preferred alignment has been identified within a broad corridor, adjustments may be able to be accommodated. The final alignment will ultimately be subject to the outcomes of planning and environmental assessments. For properties affected by the line, it is anticipated that access across the railway would be provided to facilitate the movement of farm equipment and livestock.

The Australian Rail Track Corporation updates information regarding the work they undertaking on the Inland Rail programme on their Inland Rail webpage.

Who will deliver Inland Rail?

The Australian Government has determined that the Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) provides the most cost-effective option for delivery of Inland Rail. However, the Government will conduct market testing to determine opportunities for the private sector to partner with ARTC to deliver Inland Rail.

What about terminals?

Intermodal terminals will be important to capture the benefits of Inland Rail. The Inland Rail business case and delivery plan does not include terminals as these are predominantly a matter for the private sector to develop.

Why doesn't Inland Rail go through Shepparton and Narrandera?

This route has been thoroughly investigated. It was found that it would involve significantly higher expenditure (of between $1 and $2 billion) with only a small potential revenue advantage.

How will Inland Rail link with the Port of Brisbane?

The key aim of Inland Rail is to connect to serve interstate freight, so a Brisbane connection is of paramount importance—initially this has been selected as Acacia Ridge. The Australian Rail Track Corporation has completed a study identifying options for a new freight route to the Port. Timing issues for this link are complex and dependent on a number of factors. The next step is to work with the Queensland Government and the Port of Brisbane Pty Ltd. In the interim, there is sufficient capacity on the existing rail line to the Port.

Will a passenger service be offered?

Inland Rail is designed as a freight only rail line.

What will be the carbon impact of the Inland Rail?

On the basis that one interstate train on the Inland Railway is the equivalent of approximately 110 B-doubles, Inland Rail in 2050 would reduce the freight task's carbon footprint by 750,000 tonnes per year.

How many jobs will the project generate?

Inland rail is expected to create up to 16,000 direct jobs, with 800 jobs per day during construction and 600 per day once operational (on average).

How many trains will travel along Inland Rail per week?

Almost 50 intermodal round trips will be made each week by 2050. There will also be regional and coal services.