The tender has been published at https://tenders.nsw.gov.au/?event=public.rft.show&RFTUUID=D331A166-CCAA-46D5-A827BD769850E949
- Again, it is made clear that the state government will not be contributing financially (but I don't see anything stopping a concessionaire from hitting up the relevant councils for a bit of pocket money).
- Time frame of the agreement up to the concessionaire. At the end of the time frame things get handed back to TfNSW and must be in the same or better condition than after the initial upgrade.
- They appear to want all of the lines to be brought back to operating status (though perhaps not necessarily all at once).
- They want lots of detail about the respondents' proposed business case (cost and revenue estimates with time). They want lots of detail about respondents' experience and capability, including financial depth, evidence that they have (or can relatively quickly get) accreditation, safety and environmental management systems, etc. The concessionaire may have to put up a security.
- It is suggested (in the draft deed - which the tender respondents can suggest changes to) that other entities be able to purchase access under a suggested agreement. (TfNSW may, and therefore the Cowra lines may, be subject to an access undertaking?)
- The draft deed says TfNSW can pay for enhancements if it wants them done. TfNSW gets to veto enhancements suggested by the concessionaire.
- The draft deed says the lines are subject to passenger priority and must be maintained capable of running passenger services at passenger service speeds. The draft deed struggles to keep a straight face while saying this.
- Whether advertising on the relevant land is permitted is yet to be decided.
There is a data room that requires signing of a confidentiality agreement with more information.
If, as suggested above, there is of the order of a hundred million dollars plus required for reinstatement work, then I don't see how the business case for this could work. Where's the revenue coming from?
I guess we'll find out in a few months.
From what I read of the primary tender document as I could not past the sign in page, I don't see anything on your breakdown that is unusual except perhaps the 2 areas regarding enhancements, that being TfNSW can do their own if they pay for them if they choose to, & they also have the right to knock back enhancements it doesn't like. A bit of a double edged sword.
That said, I can see they are wanting the tenderers to show their experience & intentions especially in regard to useage, the concept of ensuring the line is not just handed over with no real attempts to get it open in a viable manner & that is long term. In that concept, I would imagine all the so far businesses who have expressed support would need to now come forward & put their money & businesses where their mouths were.
The thought that comes to me is more along the line of where the primary inland route ends up, meaning the only cross country line that exists now if it ends up being part of that route & traffic forecasts for it become a reality, a 2nd or alternative option is opened with the full line being open.
The aspect of passenger grade, is also a possible part of that scenario, as it provides the option of using it to continue running passenger services, also perhaps freight services at higher speed, during main southern line shutdowns, a bonus if the old Demondrile triangle roads are put back into operation with a Southern line entry point for down services.
There is also the possibility that it includes the scope of tourism with the LVR & their operations if they go back to Cowra.
I would say that the most likely scenario for its reopening would be in stages, primarily from Demondrille - Young - Cowra with work on the wash a ways first off the mark, with sufficient work to get the remaining line through to Cowra, or perhaps Greenethorpe for Grain traffic. The Cowra - Blayney section will have a lot more work to be done to it, new bridges as well as decisions as to whether to build a new section to bypass the Carcoar tunnel, owing to the heritage order on it. That would also provide a benefit to take higher traffic loads on the section.
Time will tell.