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Expressions of interest are about to be called from companies wanting the contract to electrify Adelaide's rail network.
A $1.4 billion electric rail service is expected to be in operation by 2013, with work on the Seaford and Gawler lines due to start in 2011.
The South Australian Transport Minister Patrick Conlon says electrification should result in more efficient services during hot weather.
"There are issues about our tracks buckling in the heat with old wooden sleepers but what today's announcement means is that this is the last summer where we should have to worry about those things," he said.
"The sooner we can lay down those concrete sleepers, the sooner we can put the catenaries up, buy the rolling stock and have it running.
"We still believe we can get all of that done by 2013 and have new electric trains running out to here [Gawler] and down to Seaford."
Premier Mike Rann says it will mean more modern rail services and greater comfort.
"Electrification will provide more modern and efficient train services for commuters including environmental benefits like reduced noise and local air pollution," he said.
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