Public feedback sought on Border to Gowrie Inland Rail Environmental Impact Statement

Communities across the Southern and Inner Darling Downs are invited to submit their feedback on the draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the Inland Rail section from the New South Wales border to Gowrie in Queensland.

Deputy Prime Minister and Minister for Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development Michael McCormack welcomed the release of the draft EIS and encouraged residents to take the opportunity to comment at this critical stage of the approval process.

“Local input is key to the successful design and delivery of Inland Rail – each section is informed by local insight and the EIS process is the critical opportunity for residents and business owners to raise any feedback or concerns regarding the project,” said the Deputy Prime Minister.

“The Independent International Panel of Experts for Flood Studies in Queensland continues to work in parallel with the EIS process, independently investigating the suitability of flood models and structural designs for Inland Rail throughout Queensland, including for the Condamine floodplain.

“An initial report by the Panel will be made publicly available during the EIS exhibition.

“In finalising its advice to both governments the Panel will take into consideration all relevant submissions made by locals and other stakeholders during the EIS exhibition period.

“The Australian Government is getting on with the job of building Inland Rail. This is the second EIS in Queensland to go to public exhibition and an important step in delivering Inland Rail and the vital jobs it will bring to regional Australia.”

Inland Rail will deliver a $7.8 billion boost to the Queensland economy during construction and the first 50 years of operation and support 11,800 Queensland jobs during the peak of construction.

Local Member for Groom Garth Hamilton was pleased to see the EIS go on public exhibition and looks forward to how the fast and efficient freight rail network will benefit farmers and producers.

“Large-scale infrastructure projects, such as Inland Rail are a catalyst for growth – they create jobs, give businesses the boost they need to put on more people and encourage local investment,” Mr Hamilton said.

“To deliver Inland Rail and realise the jobs and economic benefits for our region we must ensure the design is right.

“Locals should take advantage of this chance to look at the plans and influence the final design by submitting their comments to the Office of the Coordinator-General.”

The Border to Gowrie EIS includes building 145 kilometre of new dual gauge track and upgrading 71 kilometres of track from the New South Wales/Queensland border, near Yelarbon, to Gowrie Junction, north west of Toowoomba in Queensland.

The Environmental Impact Statement process in Queensland is undertaken by the State’s Office of Coordinator-General, which has now released the Border to Gowrie EIS for public exhibition with an extended submission period of 12 weeks.

Submissions to the Border to Gowrie EIS will close at 5pm on 19 April 2021.

The document and information on how to engage with the EIS, including how to access information sessions and where to provide feedback is available at https://haveyoursay.dsd.qld.gov.au/coordinatorgeneral/inlandrailb2g/  

Media Contact:

Deputy Prime Minister – Joanne Williamson 0418 475 668 | Dean Shachar 0418 202 860

Garth Hamilton – (07) 4632 4144