ETTAMOGAH rail hub stands to be a major beneficiary of a $300 million commitment from the Coalition to begin the completion of an inland rail route between Melbourne and Brisbane.
The route already travels through the Ettamogah hub established by Colin Rees, but a Coalition government would finish off the final 2000 kilometres from near Cootamundra to the Port of Brisbane.
The extension would reduce travel time and allow for double stacking of containers unlike on the present route used.
Member for Farrer Sussan Ley said during her campaign launch in Albury yesterday rural councils in her electorate would also stand to benefit from less damage caused to local roads by trucks.
“We’ve got to get more trucks off the road,” she said.
“The route goes from Melbourne to near Cootamundra and this is about connecting from near Cootamundra to Brisbane and how we can support south-east Queensland.
“Everybody knows when harvest comes there is a lot of grain on the road when it really should be on rail.
“Every time we have a big harvest and a lot of trucks on the road we notice our roads deteriorate.
“Rail is vital and nine times more efficient than road.”
It was recently announced 100,000 tonnes of freight annually would be taken from Ettamogah to Brisbane from three major manufacturers, Mountain H20, Norske Skog and Mars Petcare.
A soon to be established $2 million agricultural equipment warehousing and distribution centre will also use the hub.
“Ettamogah will be a central point,” Ms Ley said.
“It will benefit our region economically.”
The Australian Rail Track Corporation will establish a 10-year approach to the construction of the rail route.
Construction would start within three years.