Green light for Business Case for Townsville rail project

Media Release


23 August 2016

Minister for Infrastructure and Transport Darren Chester today confirmed a commitment of $3 million for the development of a business case for the Townsville Eastern Access Rail Corridor (TEARC) project.

“The development of an in-depth business case, which will consider the feasibility and the cost estimate, is a key stage in realising this important project,” Mr Chester said.

“The Federal Government's funding commitment is conditional on the Queensland Government matching the commitment. It is part of the Coalition's $150 million commitment made by the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in May this year. “I have written to my counterpart in Queensland, Stirling Hinchliffe, to confirm my approval for the first stage of the project under the National Land Transport Act 2014.

“This project will provide a new eight kilometre rail freight line connecting the North Coast rail line and the Mount Isa to Townsville rail line to the Port of Townsville. It will transform Townsville's city centre by redirecting significant quantities of freight travelling by rail to the Port of Townsville away from the CBD. “Positive discussions between Australian Government and Queensland officials to settle appropriate governance arrangements are currently underway.

“Once the business case is complete, the project will then be assessed by Infrastructure Australia, as part of the approval process for projects receiving over $100 million in Australian Government funding.”